Study Guide

A Break With Charity What's Up With the Ending?

By Ann Rinaldi

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What's Up With the Ending?

Break out the tissues, Shmoopers, because this ending is a sad one. For starters, by the end of the book nineteen people in Salem have been hanged for witchcraft and, of course, none of them were actually witches, so that means all nineteen individuals were innocent. That's enough to make us feel like this ending is totally tragic.

But the sad stuff doesn't stop there. To top it all off, Mama English dies and Susanna has a hard time moving on from Salem's murky past.

But mixed in with all this sadness, we've got some happy bits, too. Just take a look at how Susanna and Johnathan end up hitched and happy as can be. Plus now they have two kiddos, and Joseph and Elizabeth seem pretty cheerful, too. With all these marriages and babies, life is looking up in Salem.

There's one more thing that has Salem looking like a happier place: Ann Putnam has asked for forgiveness from the whole town. And the real shocker is that Susanna forgives her old rival. Yep—Susanna might always struggle with her past, but in the end she lets one piece go when she forgives Ann.

So what do you think? Is this ending a happy one or a sad one?

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