Yael Weiss, eighteen years old and looking for adventure, finds it in the library one day when she discovers a packet of guns meant for Erinyes, an Armenian organization set on avenging their people’s massacre by the Turks in 1915. While the weapons make her nervous, Dub Hagopian, the young Armenian-American soldier sent to retrieve them, excites her in a completely different way.Smitten, Yael impulsively follows Dub to France by volunteering with the YMCA, reinventing herself along the way as twenty-five-year-old Methodist Yale White. When she and Dub cross paths again, Yael gets caught up in a crowd bursting with both the passionate ideals and the devil-may-care energy of youth–with consequences neither of them could ever foresee.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of History eBook: The Last Day of the War|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
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|Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group|
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The Last Day of the War
The Split Skirt
On the morning of her eighteenth birthday, Yael Weiss stole a suit from a St. Louis dry-goods store. She'd never stolen anything before, hadn't planned on stealing anything that morning. Still, she made an elegant job of it. That is, she didn't stuff the suit into a bag or try to conceal it beneath a voluminous skirt. She didn't simply grab it and run. All she did was put the suit on and walk out the door. Left behind in a changing room were the clothes she'd come in with: her white cotton waist, her long floral skirt, her full crinoline. She abandoned even her ribboned straw boater.
Now, back out on Locust Street, she doesn't feel guilty about any of it. That's because it's not an ordinary suit she's taken off in. It's a suffragette suit. And what, after all, do the city fathers, the politicians, the angry preachers, and the enflamed Carrie Nations all have to say about the suffragette suit? They say it's immoral. They say it's corrupting. It's the work of the devil, they say. Well, come to find out-they're right. The suffragette suit does lead to a decline in morality. It is a corrupting influence. And apparently it works even faster than liquor. Slip one on, and the next thing you know, you're trotting down a staircase, you're whirling out a revolving door, you're hurrying along a hot August sidewalk, happy and unashamed.
Who would have guessed that a woman's suit could generate such bad behavior? At first glance, it appears so respectable. The one Yael's got on is dark green, a typically muted shade in these days of world war and privation and rationing. The jacket is unremarkable too, stopping just beyond the hips, gently nipped at the waist.