Archive for the 'Historical Fiction' Category

COME JUNETEENTH by Ann Rinaldi

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COME JUNETEENTH by Ann Rinaldi is a historical fiction novel about a girl, Luli, and her friend, Sis Goose. This is Sis Goose’s journey when she finds out that she is free. Since Sis Goose, whose real name is Rose, lived with Luli and her family her whole life, she and Luli are more than friends they are like sisters. When Sis Goose finds out that she has been free for more than two years and Luli and her family didn’t tell her, she was shocked. Yankee soldiers took over the house and were the ones who told Sis Goose, Luli’s pa is dying, and Sis Goose wants to live in the house with the Yankees where trouble erupts. To find out what happens to Sis Goose, Luli and her family, read COME JUNETEENTH by Ann Rinaldi.
I RECOMMEND COME JUNETEENTH AND ALL THE OTHER BOOKS BY ANN RINALDI TO MIDDLE SCHOOLERS WHO LIKE HISTORICAL FICTION.
Lauren Moerler
Grade 6
W. Tresper Clarke Middle School

WOODS RUNNER by Gary Paulson

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It’s Pennsylvania or what would become Pennsylvania; it’s the eighteenth century, actually it’s the time of the American Revolution; and it’s Samuel not Brian in the woods with a rifle. This is WOODS RUNNER, the newest novel by Gary Paulsen.
Samuel, 13, returns from a hunting trip in the surrounding forest near his wilderness home to discover death and destruction in place of the settlement he lived with his parents. As he circled the community, Samuel finds clues that his parents may still be alive and taken as prisoners. There had been rumors of war with the British, but this was taking place in the cities and towns far from the frontier, until now.
Now Samuel begins his quest to save his parents. Along the way he meets friends and enemies. He also takes great strides toward his manhood.
Gary Paulsen tells horrible truths frequently forgotten in the story of the American Revolution. Before each chapter Mr. Paulsen offers historical explanations necessary for the reader to fully enjoy this tale. I RECOMMEND THIS TITLE FOR YOUNG TEENS AND TWEENS IN GRADES 6 THROUGH 8. IT WILL MAKE A GREAT READ FOR YOUR HISTORICAL FICTION BOOK REPORT.
Mrs. Jackson
Head of Young Adult Services

SENT by Margaret Peterson Haddix

SENT%20BOOK%20COVER.jpg For everyone who has read Margaret Peterson Haddix’s book, FOUND, the first book in THE MISSING series and have waited patiently to find out what happened to Jonah, his sister, Katherine, and his friend, Chip. The answers can be found in Haddix’s SENT.
We left the three young people along with a fourth, Alex, leaving the cave as time travelers. They were headed to the fifteenth century. It seems Chip and Alex were the young princes imprisoned in the Tower of London by their uncle the Duke of Gloucester or King Richard the Third of England. Eventhough Uncle Richard was third in line to be king; he wanted the throne for himself, so there was a plan to murder the young princes. This was the reason the young princes were saved and taken to the 21st Century. Was it possible Chip and Alex were being sent back to be murdered or can they be saved? What is going to happen to Jonah and Katherine, since they do not belong in the fifteenth century? The young people must rely on the Time Travelers from the future, but can these people from the future be trusted?
Since there is an element of historical accuracy, we know that no one really knows what happened to the two princes, but our author tells a pretty good tale. I RECOMMEND THIS BOOK TO EVERYONE WHO READ THE FIRST BOOK, IS INTERESTED IN ENGLISH HISTORY, AND IS IN MIDDLE SCHOOL
Mrs. Jackson
Head of Young Adult Services

THE MOZART QUESTION by Michael Morpurgo

THE%20MOZART%20QUESTION%20Jacket%20Cover.jpg With the opening of the movie, THE BOY IN THE STRIPED PAJAMAS, and the fact the Festival of Chanukah is celebrated during this season, it seems appropriate to write about this very thin book (69 pages with lots of illustrations), THE MOZART QUESTION by Michael Morpurgo.
Getting ready to interview the famous violinist, Paolo Levi, Lesley is reminded not to ask “The Mozart Question,” but she has no idea what it is. She does know Levi only plays live concerts never records his music; he never waits for applause because he believes it is not his playing but the music that should be revered; and he protects his privacy by avoiding interviews of any kind.
With a cup of mint tea and a view of a Venetian canal Lesley struggles with her fears to find the first question. It is “…if you’d mind telling me how you got started. I mean, what made you pick up a violin and play that first time?” (page 14) Mr. Levi agrees to answer her question, but requests that no other questions can be asked. The answer includes a generation before his birth, a hideous war, great friendships and loves, and a pain so deep it might never heal.
The war was World War II, the friendship and love his parents, and the pain was an orchestra in a concentration camp.
This is a special read, especially for music lovers. It reminds us of the importance of music in our everyday lives and how deeply music affects us.
I RECOMMEND THE MOZART QUESTION TO MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS AND ANYONE INTERESTED IN HOLOCAUST STORIES.
Mrs Jackson
Head of Young Adult Services

HURRICANE SONG by Paul Volponi

HURRICANE%20SONG%20Jacket%20Cover.jpg August, 2005, darkness, hunger, and heat spread through the Superdome in New Orleans. It is the horror of Hurricane Katrina, and Miles Shaw with his musician father and uncle are forced to take refuge in the Dome, the safest place in town. This is the setting for HURRICANE SONG by Paul Volponi.
Miles, a high school sophomore, moved in with Dad after his Mom remarried. Dad is a trumpet player and music is the man’s life, while Miles’ passion is football, not exactly common ground for a relationship for two people who have not spent much time together. When the evacuation plans for leaving town are changed, the opportunity to see the Superdome, where the city football championship is played, does not look so bad.
Entering the Superdome is the beginning of a nightmare which lasts for two days. Football in hand Miles tries to make the best of the situation only to have his football stolen, and this is the good news. Lack of food, too few bathrooms, story-hungry television reporters, by-the-book military police, death by suicide, marauding bands of young men, raping, stealing, and extorting the homeless and an unforgiving storm are reported in this hour-by-hour account. How do father and son connect after so much time apart? For Paul Volponi it is the music of New Orleans and he punctuates his message with verses from the song, “When the Saints go Marching In”, as his chapter headings. .
HURRICANE SONG may turn out to be the most powerful fictional account of the tragedy known as Katrina, and it is written for teens. This is a story sure to win awards, a must read and it is only 136 pages long.
I RECOMMEND THIS TITLES FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS IN GRADES 10-12, ESPECIALLY THE GUYS.
Mrs. Jackson
Head of Young Adult Services
East Meadow Public Library

THE WEDNESDAY WARS by Gary D. Schmidt

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I like this book, I really like this book because it reminds me of being in school, it has got an unbelievable great adult character, it set on Long Island and it is a good story. This is THE WEDNESDAY WARS by Gary D. Schmidt.
Holling Hoodhood, yes that is his name not a spelling error is the only Presbyterian in his class. Now this is 1967 and on Wednesday afternoons all the Catholics go to catechism and all the Jews go to Hebrew class, which leave very few students in their regular classrooms. (By the way when I went to school that is exactly what happened.) In Holling’s class the only one left is Holling, who stays in school with Mrs. Baker. Holling is certain Mrs. Baker hates him.
After a few Wednesdays of house cleaning, the chalk boards, erasers, and the coat room, Mrs. Baker decides to introduce Holling to the plays of Shakespeare. Of course Holling views this extra work as a punishment, but as the school progresses he learns a lot from the plays about himself, his family, his friends and the world around him. Holling even learns to curse in old English.
Since it is set in 1967 there are historical references including the Vietnam War, and the assassination of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, and there is a lot of baseball, the Yankees and Mickey Mantle.
Holling is a seventh grader, but I RECOMMEND THIS TITLE FOR BOYS AND GIRLS IN ALL THE MIDDLE SCHOOL GRADES AND IF YOU WOULD LIKE A GOOD LAUGH ANYONE WHO LOVES SHAKESPEARE.
Mrs. Jackson
Head of Young Adult Services

TREMBLING EARTH by Kim L. Siegelson

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Historical fiction readers you might like TREMBLING EARTH by Kim L. Siegelson. It is set during the Civil War.
War between the North and the South was strong. Hamp, a swamper, lived in a time when fighting would never end. Hamp hopes for the South to win the war between states, even though he’s never seen a slave. Hamp’s father lost a leg and a part of his soul because of the war. He hated the Union army for turning his loving father into a man that he has never met before. Now his father always sits on the porch singing sad songs and pining away, as the war draws closer and the family gets poorer. Scrub, the neighbor, caught a family of Negroes and held them captive with no food and water. Neeta, Hamp’s sister, felt that this was wrong and convinced Hamp to rescue the family. But Hamp was more interested in a reward for a slave named Duff. He was a no-good slave who was accused of killing his own master and is now loose on the swamp. Hamp goes after him, figuring that the bounty is his by rights. But when Hamp meets up with Duff, Hamp realizes that right and wrong weren’t black and white as he thought they were.
Stephanie Zhang
Grade 8
WT Clarke Middle School

HITCH by Jeanette Ingold

HITCH%20Jacket%20Cover.jpgHITCH by Jeanette Ingold is historical fiction with universal themes.
The Great Depression had struck Moss Trawnley, a seventeen-year-old janitor at Muddy Springs Airport. He was just fired from his job and now Moss was jobless and homeless. His father left to get a job at WPA and hadn’t returned for two years. Moss needed to get his father back to have him support his mom and siblings in Spanish Creek, Louisiana. After many attempts Moss found his father without a home or job. He turned into a drunken hobo. Moss realized his father was useless to bring home so Moss decided to find a decent job at CCC (President Roosevelt’s Civilian Conversation Corps). At least he will have food and a shelter. While the trip to Monroe, Montana, he was able to make new friends such as Nate, Sam and Apple. As soon as Moss was enrolled, they were assigned to a new project. As Moss worked harder, he learned to take action faster and better. After all Moss’s hard work and determination he earned himself a great future and a good life.
This is a must read book!! If you like a realistic fiction then you should definitely read this novel.
Stephanie Zhang
Grade 8
WT Clarke Middle School

FOR FREEDOM: THE STORY OF A FRENCH SPY by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

FOR%20FREEDOM%20THE%20STORY%20OF%20A%20FRENCH%20SPY%20Jacket%20Cover.jpg FOR FREEDOM is a about a teenage girl named Suzanne, who is a singer. Suzanne is experiencing living during a war. She is living around the time of 1940.
The Germans have invaded her city of Cherbourg . Due to the invasion; a bomb is dropped on Cherbourg and silences her friend Yvette permanently. Suzanne herself is hurt and goes to the doctor. Soon after the accident everyones’ homes on the street are invaded by Germans, accept Dr.Leclerc’s house. Suzanne and her family have to find another home.
For Suzanne singing lessons were very tight because of the war, but Suzanne gets a leading part in an opera. As Suzanne keeps on going to her doctor, he sees a quality in her that is worthy of the job he needs someone to do. Dr.Leclerc is a spy and he asks Suzanne to become a spy as well. She will carry messages to different spies. The Spies don’t call each other by their names but only by numbers. There are 22 spies in all of France . The Germans find out that Suzanne is a spy, so she is thrown in jail, but she escapes. When Suzanne gets out of jail, she knows that number 16 and herself, number 22, are the only spies left alive in all of France . They killed everyone else including Dr.Leclerc and his family, who were also spies.
Thanks to Suzanne and her strong will power she gives America and England a chance of fighting the Germans. She becomes a French hero. This is the story, FOR FREEDOM: THE STORY OF A FRENCH SPY by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley.
I BELIEVE THAT EVERYONE FROM THE 5TH GRADE ON UP WILL ENJOY READING THIS PAGE-TURNER. This is a historical fiction book that really touches the heart.
Tharshana Chandrakumar
Woodland Middle School
Grade 7