Dead End in Norvelt by Gantos, Jack
Book list Looks like a bummer of a summer for 11-year-old Jack (with a same-name protagonist, it's tempting to assume that at least some of this novel comes from the author's life). After discharging his father's WWII-souvenir Japanese rifle and cutting down his mom's fledgling cornfield, he gets grounded for the rest of his life or the rest of the summer of 1962, whichever comes first. Jack gets brief reprieves to help an old neighbor wri...More
Africa is my home : a child of the Amistad by Monica Edinger ; illustrated by Robert Byrd.
Publishers Weekly In her first book for children, Edinger fuses fact and fiction, despair and hope in the story of a nine-year-old girl taken from her Sierra Leona homeland. After being sold to slave traders, Margru is banished to the "dark and airless" hold of a ship bound for Cuba, represented by a stark, all-black spread: "Seven weeks of chains and shackles. Seven weeks of sobs and cries." In Havana, a white man buys Margru an...More
The Wright Brothers by David McCullough
Library Journal McCullough (John Adams; 1776) effectively blends impeccable writing with historical rigor and strong character definition in his biography of Wright brothers Wilbur, the abstract thinker and introvert; and Orville, the extrovert and hands-on doer. They had limited formal education, with the author instead attributing his subjects' success to industry, imagination, and persistence, as seen in their early enterprises as newspaper publish...More