Interesting early 1900's story of a middle-American young Jewish girl setting out to claim success for herself in the opportunity-heavy world of business, mostly as a direct response to a childhood of sacrifice that did not fare well for her mother and a determination to blaze a different trail. Of course, women were not major players in business, yet she refused to buy into that and fought her way forward anyway. Lots of talk about Jewish identity, is it a race or religion, and quite a bit of denial of her roots....all with mixed results. Women's suffrage, worker's rights, zealous capitalism, and the start of WWI all made for a much headier book than i was anticipating from Ferber, having read several of hers already. Apparently a fair amount of autobiographical content in the initial setting of the story. I enjoyed Ferber's folksy writing style probably more than i enjoyed this story...she has a very charming way of writing that makes it feel like just the two you are sitting in a comfortable room somewhere and she is recounting this story to you in person.....warm, judgmental, intimate, and very honest. No regrets.