The Rise of Las Vegas: Background information when reading We Are Called to Rise

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We Are Called to Rise

A Novel

by Laura McBride

We Are Called to Rise
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  • First Published:
    Jun 2014, 320 pages
    Apr 2015, 320 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Rebecca Foster

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About this Book

Beyond the Book:
The Rise of Las Vegas

The story of Las Vegas's meteoric rise from desert backwater to world-class city provides the backdrop to Laura McBride's debut novel, We Are Called to Rise, in which four city residents' lives intersect in unpredictable ways. The characters have a wide range of opinions about their hometown. While Roberta and Bashkim love the bleak beauty of the Nevada desert and its wildlife, Avis and her friends often decry the disadvantages of living "in a town nicknamed Sin City, in a place most American families wouldn't dream of bringing their children, in a state where prostitution is legal and gambling is sacrosanct."

Retro Vegas The city of Las Vegas has only existed for a little over a century, since 1905, when 110 acres next to the Union Pacific railroad tracks were auctioned. This land now forms the heart of downtown Vegas. In 1930 the population was just 5,165. Nevada legalized gambling in March 1931 and, especially from the 1950s onwards, casinos have been one of the primary factors behind ...

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