As the title would indicate, author Sydney Taylor focuses on the eponymous Ella in this, her fifth and final novel devoted to the doings of a loving, close knit Jewish family living in New York City in the early years of the twentieth century The book opens some six months after the conclusion of All of a Kind Family Uptown , which ended with Jules and the other American soldiers coming home from World War I Although there are occasional chapters devoted to the doings of some of her sibling As the title would indicate, author Sydney Taylor focuses on the eponymous Ella in this, her fifth and final novel devoted to the doings of a loving, close knit Jewish family living in New York City in the early years of the twentieth century The book opens some six months after the conclusion of All of a Kind Family Uptown , which ended with Jules and the other American soldiers coming home from World War I Although there are occasional chapters devoted to the doings of some of her siblings Henny running for office in her school s elections, Charlie playing a dangerous street game with some older boys the main narrative focus here is on Ella, who is torn between her desire for a career in singing, and her love for Jules, and longing to make a home with him As she takes a job with a vaudeville act, she must struggle with this choiceApparently many readers dislike this final entry in Taylor s series, which was written some time after the others all penned in the 1950s , and first published in 1978 For my part, although I do not love it quite as much as its predecessors, I do find it an engaging tale, and have always enjoyed it I have fond memories, over, of discovering it in the window of one of the New York Public Library s branch locations as a girl, when my mother brought me into the city on one of those take your child to work days Although I understand that many readers have found Taylor s resolution of the main narrative question view spoiler Ella decides to give up her career on the stage, because she misses Jules so much, and wants to be with him hide spoiler unsatisfying, or even sexist, I think that it reflects an issue that women continue to grapple with, to this day, and depicts it in a sensitive, nuanced way Taylor never makes it an easy choice, depicting the pros and cons of both options Nor does she present the necessity of the choice itself as desirable, acknowledging that there is a selfishness behind it all, a way in which women are expected to put others first in ways that men are not.All in all, an enjoyable conclusion to the series, and to my recent rereading project My only regret is that Taylor never got to the subsequent volumes she had planned, devoted to each of the other sisters Sadly, she died before she had a chance to write them Highly recommended, to anyone who has read and enjoyed the other All of a Kind Family books not our favorite one but still a nice ending to the story older themes versus the stories when all of the girls were younger. ELLA OF ALL OF A KIND FAMILY concludes Sydney Taylor s series about a Jewish family in the early 1920s Second daughter Henny runs for class president amid talks of suffragettes, though eldest Ella is the main focus of the story Now eighteen, working and taking music lessons, Ella has the opportunity to perform in a traveling vaudeville act but must sign a five year contract that would take her away from Jules.Written shortly before Taylor s death, ELLA OF ALL OF A KIND FAMILY holds up best wit ELLA OF ALL OF A KIND FAMILY concludes Sydney Taylor s series about a Jewish family in the early 1920s Second daughter Henny runs for class president amid talks of suffragettes, though eldest Ella is the main focus of the story Now eighteen, working and taking music lessons, Ella has the opportunity to perform in a traveling vaudeville act but must sign a five year contract that would take her away from Jules.Written shortly before Taylor s death, ELLA OF ALL OF A KIND FAMILY holds up best with 21st century literature and is my favorite of the series Wonderful life lessons in this book for your tween and older girls Enjoyed this one too Ages 9 16Cleanliness Children s Bad WordsName Calling 2 Incidents Lummoxes, half witsReligious Profanities 14 Incidents Thank goodness, Ye gods, How in heaven s name, Gee, Gosh, My God, Thank heavens, By golly, Oh, for heaven s sakeReligious Supernatural 2 Incidents A father tells his son about how Elijah the prophet visits the Jewish families when they celebrate Passover A father explains abo Wonderful life lessons in this book for your tween and older girls Enjoyed this one too Ages 9 16Cleanliness Children s Bad WordsName Calling 2 Incidents Lummoxes, half witsReligious Profanities 14 Incidents Thank goodness, Ye gods, How in heaven s name, Gee, Gosh, My God, Thank heavens, By golly, Oh, for heaven s sakeReligious Supernatural 2 Incidents A father tells his son about how Elijah the prophet visits the Jewish families when they celebrate Passover A father explains about a Jewish tradition of changing a person s name to confuse the Angel of Death.Attitudes Disobedience 1 Incident A boy disregards his mother s caution to stay close to the house and gets seriously injured.Romance Related 16 Incidents There is boy and girl romantic interaction throughout the book They hang out in groups, go dancing, etc A main character is going steady with a boy, but it is toldmatter of fact than mushy There is dancing throughout the book A girl remembers strolling hand in hand with her boyfriend A girl is reunited with her boyfriend, just back from the war Their reuniting is not very romantic as various family members enter the room They sit together, hold hands, and she plays a love song on the piano A guy picks a girl up and kisses her cheek Girls comment on handsome boys at school Someone kisses a girl on her cheek Be my pleasure, baby, a sleezy coworker says as he puts his arms around Ella A dancer falls into a man s lap Putting his arm around me every chance he gets Even pinching me Girls talk in a dressing room about a ladies man A guy holds a girl in his arms A boy and girl walk with linked arms A boy and girl kiss on the lips An unwelcome guy puts his head to close A boy and girl hug They hold hands as they walk to the park He proposes and they kiss.Conversation Topics 6 Incidents Mentions looking like a witch Women suffragettes, women voting, and women s rights are spoken about when a daughter decides to run for an office at school.While it does come up a couple a times in the book about women leaving the homes and entering into the work places, it s notfeminist than that A man puffs at his pipe Mentions wine, a cigarette A girl gets a flattering offer to enter show business It s hard to decide between following her dream or hoping for a future with her boyfriend as man and wife Spoiler Alert She chooses to enter show business It hurts her relationship with her boyfriend and she discovers what type of people she has to be around not very good or completely moral less people and that everything is not as glamorous as she thought She learns a valuable lesson and changes her decision That s the male for you, Ella found herself thinking, resenting a woman s wanting a career outside of housewife and mother It was selfish, as Jules himself had said Parent TakeawayA sweet story about a loving family and how the father and mother purposefully run their home They are devout Jews so the mention and explanation of their celebrations and feasts is part of the story The narration includes comments in the style of, Henny knew she was being naughty and felt bad afterwards There is always conclusions to wrong behaviors There is dating and dancing in the book The boy girl mentions are not fantasized or lengthy There is a strongly negative portrayal of show business and most of the book is about the oldest daughter learning what matters in life and which life path to take parents will appreciate the lesson Like my reviews Then you should follow me Because I have hundredsjust like this one With each review, I provide a Cleanliness Report, mentioning any objectionable content I come across so that parents and or conscientious readers like me can determine beforehand whether they want to read a book or not Content surprises are super annoying, especially when you re 100 pages in, so here s my attempt to help you avoid that So Follow or Friend me here on GoodReads You ll see my updates as I m reading and know which books I m liking and what I m not finishing and why You ll also be able to utilize my library for looking up titles to see whether the book you re thinking about reading next has any objectionable content or not From swear words, to romance, to bad attitudes in children s books , I cover it all This book wasn t bad, but it just doesn t seem to go with the other books in the series It was written a little later, and the illustrations are in a different style It does give an interesting picture of what vaudeville was like, and Ella has to make some important decisions, so I think it is definitely worth reading it in order to finish the series Also, it might be interesting to discuss the ideas about gender roles in this book and how they have changed. Writing was subpar compared to previous ones in the series, but it is always a treat to revisit this family. This wasn t as bad as Downtown but it wasn t very good, either The illustrations were terrible Seriously bad The story is not fresh, the plot line is predictable It sor less phoned in Interesting how the bad books in this series are accompanied by the bad illustrations Or what look to me like bad illustrations. I m kind of sad to have finished this series In this book, there is a lot of interesting talk about the suffrage movement I loved this series. In the fifth and final book in the All of A Kind Family series, Ella, the eldest child of the family, has been offered a stage career by a Broadway talent scout While Ella wants to sing than anything else in the world, she finds herself torn between Jules, her beloved fianc who has just returned from World War I, and what s sure to be a tough uphill climb to stardom Once again, the loving all of a kind family provides the support needed for Ella to make the right decisionBorn inon New York s Lower East Side, Sydney Taylor was one of the first authors of children s books centered on Jewish characters, and is especially known for the immensely popular All of a Kind Family series The Sydney Taylor Book Award is given each year by the Jewish Association of Libraries to a book for young people that authentically portrays the Jewish experience I read all the books in this series as a child, but I don t remember being as disappointed in Ella of All of a Kind Family as I am now Perhaps I m justin tune to good writing and this wasn t good writing It got off to a bad start in the Foreword where the ending of the story was revealed Why, oh why do publishers do this According to dictionary.com, foreword means a short introductory statement in a published work According to dictionary.com, introductory means preliminary, beg I read all the books in this series as a child, but I don t remember being as disappointed in Ella of All of a Kind Family as I am now Perhaps I m justin tune to good writing and this wasn t good writing It got off to a bad start in the Foreword where the ending of the story was revealed Why, oh why do publishers do this According to dictionary.com, foreword means a short introductory statement in a published work According to dictionary.com, introductory means preliminary, beginning Do you see where I m going with this The foreword, aka the beginning of the book, is not the place for spoilers That is simply common sense.Most of the book concentrated on Ella and her budding career as a singer I found her chapters jarring She d be talking, then quickly switch to internal dialogue with herself this is made up just so you can get the gist of it Dialogue Jules, I ve been offered a spot in the vaudeville company Internal dialogue Should I give up my life with Jules for vaudeville But why should I have to give up my career for Jules Maybe the vaudeville life isn t right for me But, if I don t try I ll never know I don t know what to do It reminded me of the goofy internal dialogue on old soap operas Interspersed with the chapters about Ella were chapters about her siblings The transitions were poor Those chapters followed in the spirit of the previous books but did not fit in with a book that was supposed to be about Ella alone.Unfortunately, this book just wasn t on par with the other All of a Kind Family books I believe Sydney Taylor died of cancer shortly after this was published Perhaps that had something to do with the diminished quality of this book Sadly, she d intended to write a book about each of the siblings but died before she could get to them But maybe not so sad if they d continued on in this vein, I think my overall impression of the series would have been tainted.This has nothing to do with Sydney Taylor, but this edition, published by Lizzie Skurnick Books, was terrible The cover art was ghastly, the interior illustrations were awful, and there seemed to be a spelling error on almost every page Shameful