Category Archives: Historical Fiction

Unspoken: A Story from the Underground Railroad

Unspoken: A Story from the Underground Railroad

This book doesn’t have a single word in it. Not one. The story is told entirely in picture, and you have to look at the pictures carefully to figure out what is going on. The little girl on the cover is headed to the barn. Why do you think she is looking over her shoulder like that? She looks a little scare to me. Her feet are all business, heading purposely in one direction but her eyes and her head, they are definitely on alert. Open this one to answer this question for yourself – would you be brave enough to do what she does?

 

 

Websites:

Books:

Freedom's aCalling Me Underground American Archaeology Uncovers the Underground Railroad Moses
Freedom Song Henry's Freedom Box Eliza's Freedom Road January's Sparrow
Unspoken
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Staff Pick: Eight Cousins

Staff Pick: Eight Cousins

Orphaned Rose Campbell finds it difficult to fit in when she goes to live with her six aunts and seven mischievous boy cousins.

“Louisa May Alcott is most famous for her story of the four sisters in Little Women but she wrote about other well-behaved, strong-willed girls, too, and Rose Campbell is one of them. Orphaned Rose has been sent to her aunts to await the arrival of her guardian uncle, and she is very unhappy: lonely without her father; uncertain of her affection for her aunts; and shy of her seven rowdy boy cousins. But most of all, she is fearful that her uncle will be strict and unkind. To Rose’s relief he is neither, and he even encourages her to give up her prim and proper ways. Soon Rose is running, boating and even riding horses, as well as gently bossing the boy cousins! This book was written over 100 years ago, so some of it seems very old-fashioned (one of the aunts disapproves of slang) but some things could happen today, as when Rose sneakily has a friend pierce her ears! Mostly, it is just a story of a young woman having adventures and learning from them who she wants to be.”

Recommended by: Doriene Smither – Pike

If you like sassy girls learning how to be confident and strong and occasionally take on the boys…try one of these:

Caddie Woodlawn Roller Skates All of a Kind Family Rebecca of Sunnybrooke Farm Anne of Green Gables
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Staff Pick: The Lions of Little Rock

Staff Pick: The Lions of Little Rock

The Lions of Little Rock

Krisitin Levine’s sensitive and engaging novel The Lions of Little Rock takes place during the struggle to integrate public schools in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1958. The narrator is 12 year old Marlee , who seldom speaks to anyone except family members. Math whiz Marlee prefers numbers to words, “ In math, you always get the same answer, no matter how you do the problem. But with words, blue can be a thousand different shades!” That changes when she becomes friends with Liz, a new girl at school. Their friendship is disrupted when Liz suddenly disappears from school after it is discovered that she is black and not welcome at the still segregated school. The story that follows is not only about Marlee finding her voice in many ways, but also about the courage it took for individuals in the Little Rock community to find their voices, come together, and stand up for what is right. The author successfully combines themes of friendship, family, and profound issues in our society with a light enough touch that makes the book a pleasure to read, and encourages the reader to reflect on all the issues the story presents.

Recommended by: Amy Friedman, The Learning Curve@Central Library

More Staff Picks

More books about school integration in Little Rock:

The Little Rock Nine Stand Up for Their Rights Little Rock Girl 1957Little Rock Nine
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Staff Pick: Freedom Song The Story of Henry Box Brown

Staff Pick: Freedom Song The Story of Henry Box Brown

Henry's Freedom BoxA fictionalized account of how in 1849 a Virginia slave, Henry “Box” Brown, escapes to freedom by shipping himself in a wooden crate from Richmond to Philadelphia.

“This is the story of Henry “Box” Brown, the slave that mailed himself to freedom. Henry was born into slavery. He loved his family, sang with them and wanted them to always stay together. After he grew up and married, his family was sold away from him. Left with nothing but music, this story tells how he took that music about “freedom-land” and created and carried out a risky escape by mailing himself in a box to Pennsylvania. The book includes a note from the author and the words from an actual letter from the man who received Henry in the box at the end of his unusual journey.”

Michael Perry, Warren Branch Library

More Staff Picks

More dramatic stories about the U.S. Postal Service::
Mailing May Calico Dorsey Mule Train Off Like the Wind
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Reader Review: Tricking the Tallyman

Reader Review: Tricking the Tallyman

Tricking the Tallyman In 1790, the suspicious residents of a small Vermont town try to trick the man who has been sent to count their population for the first United States Census.

Sandra says:

An interesting story about when the census began.  Even if it weren’t historically based, students would enjoy the scheming.”

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