Historical Novels for Children: The Post-War World

These novels explore what it was like in the years immediately following World War II as people tried to make sense of the world and their place in it. The list includes books that tell the stories of immigrants who came to America in an effort to fulfill their dreams of a safe and prosperous life for themselves and their families. However, many of these people encountered shocking instances of racism, which afflicted other minorities in America as well. These stories are important for understanding where we came from and how far we still need to go to achieve true freedom for all American citizens.

These novels explore what it was like in the years immediately following World War II as people tried to make sense of the world and their place in it. The list includes books that tell the stories of immigrants who came to America in an effort to fulfill their dreams of a safe and prosperous life for themselves and their families. However, many of these people encountered shocking instances of racism, which afflicted other minorities in America as well. These stories are important for understanding where we came from and how far we still need to go to achieve true freedom for all American citizens.

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Beyond the Yellow Star to America

Author: Auerbacher, Inge

Subjects: History; Personal Experience; Jewish History; Holocaust; Immigration

Age: 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18

Grade: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

ISBN: 0-88092-252-4

Order code: 2524

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 2524S

Beyond the Yellow Star to America Cover

New York Public Library Choice, Books for the Teenage Reader
New York State Deptartment of Education Yavner Award
Kansas State Reading Circle Choice
Ellis Island Award

Inge Auerbacher’s first book, I Am a Star: Child of the Holocaust, won the coveted Merit of Educational Distinction award from the International Center for Holocaust Studies of the B’nai Brith Anti-Defamation League. It covers her childhood years up to age eleven and her internment in the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia, ending with the Allied Liberation in 1945.

Inge’s second book, Beyond the Yellow Star to America, carries readers into Inge's world of being an immigrant in America, at once dealing with her own psychological and physiological growing up—dealing with the usual challenges of group acceptance, self-esteem, and peer pressure—as well as the external world of being an outsider to American culture. Inge tells her story through a series of sequential vignettes reinforced by many photographs.

Following a brief historical background, we arrive with Inge in New York Harbor in 1946 aboard the Marine Perch, an American troop transport ship, and travel with her through her life’s turning points against the 1940s, '50s, and '60s settings of New York’s East Side, Brooklyn, and Queens. We revisit Europe with her. We experience the hot and cold factions of her Americanized relatives, the resolve of her parents to achieve in the American economic mainstream in spite of the physical odds against them during their first steps to independence, and Inge’s struggle against her private, ongoing physical nightmare of having been a child of the Holocaust, all of which will fill readers with pride in the positive qualities of the human spirit and its determina­tion to survive.

Inge’s personal psychological fuel from the past drives her dynamism and ideals of today for the betterment of humankind. She is an activist for tolerance. She is an accomplished motivational public speaker for brotherhood through education and com­munication against bigotry and other manipulative tactics that divide humanity into isolated groups.

Inge Auerbacher is also the author of Running Against the Wind, a biographical novel of Mary and Martha DeSaussure.

Reviews:

“This is a first-rate, moving autobiographical account of life as a refugee and what it takes to step beyond past pain and create a meaningful life.... A truly wonderful complement to The Diary of Anne Frank.” – VOYA Magazine

“...simple, deeply effective prose.... Students studying the Holocaust will benefit from Inge’s per­spective and empathize with her experiences. Recommended for junior high school students." – KLI­ATT Magazine

New York Public Library Choice, Books for the Teenage Reader
New York State Deptartment of Education Yavner Award
Kansas State Reading Circle Choice
Ellis Island Award

Inge Auerbacher’s first book, I Am a Star: Child of the Holocaust, won the coveted Merit of Educational Distinction award from the International Center for Holocaust Studies of the B’nai Brith Anti-Defamation League. It covers her childhood years up to age eleven and her internment in the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia, ending with the Allied Liberation in 1945.

Inge’s second book, Beyond the Yellow Star to America, carries readers into Inge's world of being an immigrant in America, at once dealing with her own psychological and physiological growing up—dealing with the usual challenges of group acceptance, self-esteem, and peer pressure—as well as the external world of being an outsider to American culture. Inge tells her story through a series of sequential vignettes reinforced by many photographs.

Following a brief historical background, we arrive with Inge in New York Harbor in 1946 aboard the Marine Perch, an American troop transport ship, and travel with her through her life’s turning points against the 1940s, '50s, and '60s settings of New York’s East Side, Brooklyn, and Queens. We revisit Europe with her. We experience the hot and cold factions of her Americanized relatives, the resolve of her parents to achieve in the American economic mainstream in spite of the physical odds against them during their first steps to independence, and Inge’s struggle against her private, ongoing physical nightmare of having been a child of the Holocaust, all of which will fill readers with pride in the positive qualities of the human spirit and its determina­tion to survive.

Inge’s personal psychological fuel from the past drives her dynamism and ideals of today for the betterment of humankind. She is an activist for tolerance. She is an accomplished motivational public speaker for brotherhood through education and com­munication against bigotry and other manipulative tactics that divide humanity into isolated groups.

Inge Auerbacher is also the author of Running Against the Wind, a biographical novel of Mary and Martha DeSaussure.

Reviews:

“This is a first-rate, moving autobiographical account of life as a refugee and what it takes to step beyond past pain and create a meaningful life.... A truly wonderful complement to The Diary of Anne Frank.” – VOYA Magazine

“...simple, deeply effective prose.... Students studying the Holocaust will benefit from Inge’s per­spective and empathize with her experiences. Recommended for junior high school students." – KLI­ATT Magazine

Beyond the Yellow Star to America Cover

Running Against the Wind

Author: Auerbacher, Inge

Subjects: Sports; DeSaussure, Mary and Martha; Historical Biography; African-Americans; Multicultural Friendship

Age: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15

Grade: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Order code: 4373

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 4373S

Running Against the Wind Cover

“A wonderful story...” – Children’s Literature

Running Against the Wind is a biographical novel of Mary and Martha DeSaussure, the pioneering twin black track stars, against a background of interracial relations as they really were. This is the warm story of their religious home life (Papa was a minister), their “mixed” neighborhood, and their athletic triumphs and heartbreaking defeats. The story tells of the realities of post-WWII racial prejudices, the pride of the girls’ immediate neighborhood, and the vulnerability they learned to feel when they ventured outside of it.

Mary and Martha’s immediate neighbors and shop-owner friends, fixtures in their growing-up years, were a wonderful mix of black, Jewish, Irish, and Italian people. The twins relate personal stories about each, and because they were children, it is striking how many of their remembrances have to do with food or candy. (The girls insisted that their story contain an appendix of the recipes that have become a part of their lives!)

The twins' story is also the story of the Police Athletic League and how the sisters helped to reshape it. The PAL gave them the psychological boost to achieve, to believe. It opened very real doors. And it changed forever for women because of them. The PAL story picks up from the first race that Mary won at the 13th Regiment Armory Regional Track Meet (but received the silver medal because she was black, and the white German favorite got the gold). It includes the successes of “firsts” the twins shared in the first black PAL girls track team in Bedford-Stuyvesant and the first integrated PAL AAU women’s track team in New York City. Their scrapbooks are filled with photos and medals. And the panorama shows the white canvass of female athletes and spectators that first greeted them.

Today, Mary and Martha are leaders in their own interest areas. Both rose in the ranks of the Women’s Auxiliary of the National Baptist Convention; VARANA, the Volta Region Association of North America; and the Women’s Africa Committee of the African-American Institute. Mary retired from the Elmhurst Hospital Center as Administrative Executive Secretary to the Director. Martha pursued politics and became the first black administrative secretary in the New York Supreme Court and then the first black legal administrative secretary to work in the Appellate Division. She has been a team with Justice William C. Thompson for more than thirty years.

In 2001, the New York Historical Society chose Mary as one of its heroes for its exhibit titled “Choosing to Participate: Facing History and Ourselves.” The exhibit celebrates the power of the individual to make a difference.

Author Inge Auerbacher has been a close, personal friend of the DeSaussure twins for more than thirty years. This is her third book. I Am a Star chronicled her childhood years in a concentration camp as a Holocaust victim. Her second book, Beyond the Yellow Star to Americapicks up her story at her arrival in New York City in 1945. Inge has won many awards, including the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.

“A wonderful story...” – Children’s Literature

Running Against the Wind is a biographical novel of Mary and Martha DeSaussure, the pioneering twin black track stars, against a background of interracial relations as they really were. This is the warm story of their religious home life (Papa was a minister), their “mixed” neighborhood, and their athletic triumphs and heartbreaking defeats. The story tells of the realities of post-WWII racial prejudices, the pride of the girls’ immediate neighborhood, and the vulnerability they learned to feel when they ventured outside of it.

Mary and Martha’s immediate neighbors and shop-owner friends, fixtures in their growing-up years, were a wonderful mix of black, Jewish, Irish, and Italian people. The twins relate personal stories about each, and because they were children, it is striking how many of their remembrances have to do with food or candy. (The girls insisted that their story contain an appendix of the recipes that have become a part of their lives!)

The twins' story is also the story of the Police Athletic League and how the sisters helped to reshape it. The PAL gave them the psychological boost to achieve, to believe. It opened very real doors. And it changed forever for women because of them. The PAL story picks up from the first race that Mary won at the 13th Regiment Armory Regional Track Meet (but received the silver medal because she was black, and the white German favorite got the gold). It includes the successes of “firsts” the twins shared in the first black PAL girls track team in Bedford-Stuyvesant and the first integrated PAL AAU women’s track team in New York City. Their scrapbooks are filled with photos and medals. And the panorama shows the white canvass of female athletes and spectators that first greeted them.

Today, Mary and Martha are leaders in their own interest areas. Both rose in the ranks of the Women’s Auxiliary of the National Baptist Convention; VARANA, the Volta Region Association of North America; and the Women’s Africa Committee of the African-American Institute. Mary retired from the Elmhurst Hospital Center as Administrative Executive Secretary to the Director. Martha pursued politics and became the first black administrative secretary in the New York Supreme Court and then the first black legal administrative secretary to work in the Appellate Division. She has been a team with Justice William C. Thompson for more than thirty years.

In 2001, the New York Historical Society chose Mary as one of its heroes for its exhibit titled “Choosing to Participate: Facing History and Ourselves.” The exhibit celebrates the power of the individual to make a difference.

Author Inge Auerbacher has been a close, personal friend of the DeSaussure twins for more than thirty years. This is her third book. I Am a Star chronicled her childhood years in a concentration camp as a Holocaust victim. Her second book, Beyond the Yellow Star to Americapicks up her story at her arrival in New York City in 1945. Inge has won many awards, including the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.

Running Against the Wind Cover

The Iron Road Home

Author: Nebel, Laurel

Subjects: Adventure; Family Relationships; Railroads; Social Relationships

Age: 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15

Grade: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

Order code: 4667

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 4667S

The Iron Road Home Cover

In 1953, railroads not only connected the country but also supported a whole culture and way of life for hobos. This is the story of one girl’s adventure, played out against the deftly portrayed world of the iron road. It is a sensitive, well-told story about the subculture of the railroads and the life of hobos. It is a piece of Americana that mainstream America knows little about. The author’s research was meticulous. Woven into the story is the sign language of the hobos. Each mark, like a hieroglyph, is a complete message.

After her mother’s death, thirteen-year-old Frankie Cooper talks the local mortician into hiring her as a live-in domestic to pay for a proper burial for her mom. The mortician finds Frankie exceedingly attractive. To escape being assaulted by him, Frankie dives out of her bedroom window, tumbles off the short roof into some bushes, and races to catch the nightly freight train leaving Devils Lake, North Dakota. The mortician is in hot pursuit.

Just as her legs give out, a hobo hauls her into a boxcar. Frightened and wary, she gradually accepts that the hobo, Minnesota Blackie, won’t harm her, and they continue on their odyssey across the plains on the Great Northern “high line.” Blackie is heading for the coast to catch an Alaska-bound fishing trawler. Frankie hopes to talk him into taking her to Washington state’s apple country to find the grandparents she’s never met, who are most likely unaware that she even exists. Blackie agrees, but only if Frankie cuts her curly red hair. Young girls are rarely seen on the road. With cropped hair, she’ll pass for a boy.

Danger rides the rails with the pair. A hundred-dollar reward is out for Frankie’s arrest. The rejected mortician has branded her a thief, and his rich wife has accused Frankie of stealing her diamond earrings. Reward notices are circulated on the rail lines. A Minot railyard switchman nearly exposes her as a girl, and two drifters are determined to collect the reward.

Frankie and Blackie are separated as the train pulls out for the long run to Havre, Montana. Blackie finds her two days later in a hobo jungle. The two drifters have also spotted her. On the train leaving Havre, the drifters attack. Frankie and Blackie narrowly escape, resume their journey west, and ultimately locate Frankie’s grandparents—only to be nearly turned away. How can Frankie claim to be Frank Cooper's daughter? Frank was killed in the war and never married. But with Blackie’s help, Frankie proves that she is indeed the Coopers' granddaughter.

Blackie stays for a time and works in a local saw mill. Frankie has come to regard him as the father she never knew, and a close bond develops. Blackie’s character fully emerges, and it is a sad day for all when he feels that he must move on. But he makes a final promise to Frankie that he will return.

In 1953, railroads not only connected the country but also supported a whole culture and way of life for hobos. This is the story of one girl’s adventure, played out against the deftly portrayed world of the iron road. It is a sensitive, well-told story about the subculture of the railroads and the life of hobos. It is a piece of Americana that mainstream America knows little about. The author’s research was meticulous. Woven into the story is the sign language of the hobos. Each mark, like a hieroglyph, is a complete message.

After her mother’s death, thirteen-year-old Frankie Cooper talks the local mortician into hiring her as a live-in domestic to pay for a proper burial for her mom. The mortician finds Frankie exceedingly attractive. To escape being assaulted by him, Frankie dives out of her bedroom window, tumbles off the short roof into some bushes, and races to catch the nightly freight train leaving Devils Lake, North Dakota. The mortician is in hot pursuit.

Just as her legs give out, a hobo hauls her into a boxcar. Frightened and wary, she gradually accepts that the hobo, Minnesota Blackie, won’t harm her, and they continue on their odyssey across the plains on the Great Northern “high line.” Blackie is heading for the coast to catch an Alaska-bound fishing trawler. Frankie hopes to talk him into taking her to Washington state’s apple country to find the grandparents she’s never met, who are most likely unaware that she even exists. Blackie agrees, but only if Frankie cuts her curly red hair. Young girls are rarely seen on the road. With cropped hair, she’ll pass for a boy.

Danger rides the rails with the pair. A hundred-dollar reward is out for Frankie’s arrest. The rejected mortician has branded her a thief, and his rich wife has accused Frankie of stealing her diamond earrings. Reward notices are circulated on the rail lines. A Minot railyard switchman nearly exposes her as a girl, and two drifters are determined to collect the reward.

Frankie and Blackie are separated as the train pulls out for the long run to Havre, Montana. Blackie finds her two days later in a hobo jungle. The two drifters have also spotted her. On the train leaving Havre, the drifters attack. Frankie and Blackie narrowly escape, resume their journey west, and ultimately locate Frankie’s grandparents—only to be nearly turned away. How can Frankie claim to be Frank Cooper's daughter? Frank was killed in the war and never married. But with Blackie’s help, Frankie proves that she is indeed the Coopers' granddaughter.

Blackie stays for a time and works in a local saw mill. Frankie has come to regard him as the father she never knew, and a close bond develops. Blackie’s character fully emerges, and it is a sad day for all when he feels that he must move on. But he makes a final promise to Frankie that he will return.

The Iron Road Home Cover

The Summer of My First Pediddle

Author: Moiles, Steven

Subjects: American History; Family Relationships; Prejudice; McCarthyism; Social Relationships

Age: 14, 15, 16, 17, 18

Grade: 9, 10, 11, 12

Order code: 1226

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 1226S

The Summer of My First Pediddle Cover

“...an engaging story.... Teenage readers will relate...would work well in a unit on prejudice..." – VOYA Magazine

"Moiles is a fine writer who understands the impact of bigotry and intolerance and the agonies of young people caught up in events they can't control." – Robert Cormier

The setting is eastern Illinois and Washington, D.C., during the McCarthy Era—that period in the 1950s when the beliefs and social lives of average citizens were subject to intense, microscopic scrutiny by governmental agencies.

David Thatcher is a fourteen-year-old whose father, a Washington, D.C.-based Army colonel in charge of a supplies office, has been subpoenaed to appear before Joseph McCarthy’s Senate committee. The story revolves around David’s reactions to McCarthyism and his confused feelings about his father’s case. We follow David through the most important three months of his life as he grows up and begins to process information and think for himself. He begins to build an accurate values system as he separates reality from appearances, recognizes how facts can be distorted by twists or by omissions to lead to incorrect conclusions, understands the workings of guilt by association, becomes aware of the manipulative powers of the media, and sees how dramatic presentation techniques can misuse television in presenting “live” coverage of events to viewers. David learns that friendship, loyalty, love, and truth are paramount.

Two subplots further explore the concept of love. Its romantic viewpoint is expressed through David’s relationship with Joy. She is an intelligent, beautiful, open-minded, sensitive teenager. Family love with the purpose of manipulation is epitomized by David's soft-spoken, seemingly genuine grandfather.

“...an engaging story.... Teenage readers will relate...would work well in a unit on prejudice..." – VOYA Magazine

"Moiles is a fine writer who understands the impact of bigotry and intolerance and the agonies of young people caught up in events they can't control." – Robert Cormier

The setting is eastern Illinois and Washington, D.C., during the McCarthy Era—that period in the 1950s when the beliefs and social lives of average citizens were subject to intense, microscopic scrutiny by governmental agencies.

David Thatcher is a fourteen-year-old whose father, a Washington, D.C.-based Army colonel in charge of a supplies office, has been subpoenaed to appear before Joseph McCarthy’s Senate committee. The story revolves around David’s reactions to McCarthyism and his confused feelings about his father’s case. We follow David through the most important three months of his life as he grows up and begins to process information and think for himself. He begins to build an accurate values system as he separates reality from appearances, recognizes how facts can be distorted by twists or by omissions to lead to incorrect conclusions, understands the workings of guilt by association, becomes aware of the manipulative powers of the media, and sees how dramatic presentation techniques can misuse television in presenting “live” coverage of events to viewers. David learns that friendship, loyalty, love, and truth are paramount.

Two subplots further explore the concept of love. Its romantic viewpoint is expressed through David’s relationship with Joy. She is an intelligent, beautiful, open-minded, sensitive teenager. Family love with the purpose of manipulation is epitomized by David's soft-spoken, seemingly genuine grandfather.

The Summer of My First Pediddle Cover

Where a White Dog Smiles

Author: Mihevic, Demetra

Subjects: Immigration; Greek-Americans; Animal Story; Growing Up/Girls

Age: 8, 9, 10, 11

Grade: 3, 4, 5, 6

Order code: 9848

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 9848S

Where a White Dog Smiles Cover

This story begins in 1952 in Greece, in Elinohori, a mountain village on the northern part of the Peloponnesus, far removed from the centers of civilization. Nine-year-old Maria lives here with her mother, bossy aunt, grandmother, and pet dog. Father was a World War II casualty, as were most of the other men in the village. Therefore, her unmarried aunt has little hope of finding a husband and is in disgrace in the eyes of tradition. Their lives center on picking grapes and making bread.

When Uncle Dimitri in America offers to have Maria live with his family, the women agree that Elinohori offers Maria no opportunity. Soon she is on her way to America. This is the story of Maria’s passage from her home and family and orthodox Greek tradition to a strange family, school, language, and way of life.

Readers will bond with Maria from the beginning of the book—crying with her and smiling with her through a variety of experiences that transcend miles and time. From the first, she is strong, observant, intelligent, sensitive, introspective, and brave, yet looking to her mother for direction. Her mother knows the reality of their situation and lovingly nudges Maria into a new world of hope and personal possibility.

We smile at Maria’s joy and befuddlement about such things as showers, skyscrapers, elevators, hot dogs with mustard and ketchup, cookies, and her first snowstorm. And we appreciate her problem-solving abilities as she wills her mind to learn English vocabulary at home and at school because she knows that mastering the language is the key to friendships and success. She meets children who mock her accent and play vocabulary tricks on her. Eventually, one special youngster’s animosity, aroused by Maria’s growing popularity and determination, is defeated and replaced by friendship and admiration.

In her new home, Maria finds the love of her uncle and aunt. Above all, she finds a friend for life, a friend with whom to share all her hopes and fears—a white Samoyed, Petie.

Demetra Mihevic is also the author of When the Barred Owl Calls, the sequel to Where a White Dog Smiles.

This story begins in 1952 in Greece, in Elinohori, a mountain village on the northern part of the Peloponnesus, far removed from the centers of civilization. Nine-year-old Maria lives here with her mother, bossy aunt, grandmother, and pet dog. Father was a World War II casualty, as were most of the other men in the village. Therefore, her unmarried aunt has little hope of finding a husband and is in disgrace in the eyes of tradition. Their lives center on picking grapes and making bread.

When Uncle Dimitri in America offers to have Maria live with his family, the women agree that Elinohori offers Maria no opportunity. Soon she is on her way to America. This is the story of Maria’s passage from her home and family and orthodox Greek tradition to a strange family, school, language, and way of life.

Readers will bond with Maria from the beginning of the book—crying with her and smiling with her through a variety of experiences that transcend miles and time. From the first, she is strong, observant, intelligent, sensitive, introspective, and brave, yet looking to her mother for direction. Her mother knows the reality of their situation and lovingly nudges Maria into a new world of hope and personal possibility.

We smile at Maria’s joy and befuddlement about such things as showers, skyscrapers, elevators, hot dogs with mustard and ketchup, cookies, and her first snowstorm. And we appreciate her problem-solving abilities as she wills her mind to learn English vocabulary at home and at school because she knows that mastering the language is the key to friendships and success. She meets children who mock her accent and play vocabulary tricks on her. Eventually, one special youngster’s animosity, aroused by Maria’s growing popularity and determination, is defeated and replaced by friendship and admiration.

In her new home, Maria finds the love of her uncle and aunt. Above all, she finds a friend for life, a friend with whom to share all her hopes and fears—a white Samoyed, Petie.

Demetra Mihevic is also the author of When the Barred Owl Calls, the sequel to Where a White Dog Smiles.

Where a White Dog Smiles Cover

We Have to Escape

Author: Makranczy, Judit

Subjects: Personal Experience; Immigration; European History; Cold War; Hungarian Revolution of 1956

Age: 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18

Grade: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Order code: 3733

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 3733S

We Have to Escape Cover

Twelve-year-old Andras is the best soccer player on the team at his new school. But his teammates, jealous of his natural abilities, tease and harass him mercilessly. When he decides to quit the team, Jennifer, the sister of one of the players, intercedes and offers him the kind words and support he needs to open up and tell the amazing story he has kept secret.

Andras begins with the terrifying night the Hungarian Secret Police arrested his father and mother in his hometown of Budapest, Hungary. He tells the poignant story of his family’s daring and frightening journey to the United States. Knowing they will be shot if they are captured, Andras and his family plan their escape, obtaining the forged documents necessary to leave their shattered city for freedom in America. Along with his parents, grandfather, and three sisters, he encounters terrifying situations as the family heads for the border. And his once-boyish hopes for adventure turn into abject fear of those life-threatening events. The family must survive the terror of bullets, border guards, prison, and dangerous crossings as they begin their journey to freedom and acceptance in a strange land.

We Have to Escape is the true story of an exciting and terror-filled escape to America and how, once in the U.S., life for Andras seemed to be unjustly chaotic as he tried to fit into a strange culture.

Judit Makranczy was born in Budapest, Hungary. Her novel depicts the events of her family’s triumphs and tragedies as they fled their war-torn country to come to America.

Twelve-year-old Andras is the best soccer player on the team at his new school. But his teammates, jealous of his natural abilities, tease and harass him mercilessly. When he decides to quit the team, Jennifer, the sister of one of the players, intercedes and offers him the kind words and support he needs to open up and tell the amazing story he has kept secret.

Andras begins with the terrifying night the Hungarian Secret Police arrested his father and mother in his hometown of Budapest, Hungary. He tells the poignant story of his family’s daring and frightening journey to the United States. Knowing they will be shot if they are captured, Andras and his family plan their escape, obtaining the forged documents necessary to leave their shattered city for freedom in America. Along with his parents, grandfather, and three sisters, he encounters terrifying situations as the family heads for the border. And his once-boyish hopes for adventure turn into abject fear of those life-threatening events. The family must survive the terror of bullets, border guards, prison, and dangerous crossings as they begin their journey to freedom and acceptance in a strange land.

We Have to Escape is the true story of an exciting and terror-filled escape to America and how, once in the U.S., life for Andras seemed to be unjustly chaotic as he tried to fit into a strange culture.

Judit Makranczy was born in Budapest, Hungary. Her novel depicts the events of her family’s triumphs and tragedies as they fled their war-torn country to come to America.

We Have to Escape Cover

Moves

Author: Horn, Douglas C.

Subjects: Bullying; Immigration; Judo and Aikido; Japanese-Americans; Social Relationships

Age: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Grade: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Order code: 1501

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 1501S

Moves Cover

Moves is the story of Hiro, a boy from Nagoya, Japan, who moves to a small town in Montana when his father is sent there to run a company-owned cattle ranch. Hiro quickly becomes the favorite target of the school bully but feels that he cannot talk about his problems with his parents, who are already discussing sending him back to Japan and experiencing problems of their own with American society.

In the privacy of his room, Hiro is comforted by his Aikido equipment and training. He quickly adapts to Judo lessons taught by a black sensei who is as sensitive to Hiro’s needs as he is strong. Hiro’s Judo lessons catapult him to peer acceptance and help him to establish an important first friendship. He learns to confront his problems but with temperance and understanding. He comes to understand the psychological pressure on his father, whose concept of leadership is colored by his social separation. His mother suffers from loneliness and boredom until she takes an active role in seeking a friend—in spite of the language barrier.

Douglas Horn called upon his experiences living in Japan and the American West to create Hiro’s world. The Judo scenes in the novel reflect Horn's familiarity with Judo and the related discipline of Aikido, which he teaches in his free time.

Moves is the story of Hiro, a boy from Nagoya, Japan, who moves to a small town in Montana when his father is sent there to run a company-owned cattle ranch. Hiro quickly becomes the favorite target of the school bully but feels that he cannot talk about his problems with his parents, who are already discussing sending him back to Japan and experiencing problems of their own with American society.

In the privacy of his room, Hiro is comforted by his Aikido equipment and training. He quickly adapts to Judo lessons taught by a black sensei who is as sensitive to Hiro’s needs as he is strong. Hiro’s Judo lessons catapult him to peer acceptance and help him to establish an important first friendship. He learns to confront his problems but with temperance and understanding. He comes to understand the psychological pressure on his father, whose concept of leadership is colored by his social separation. His mother suffers from loneliness and boredom until she takes an active role in seeking a friend—in spite of the language barrier.

Douglas Horn called upon his experiences living in Japan and the American West to create Hiro’s world. The Judo scenes in the novel reflect Horn's familiarity with Judo and the related discipline of Aikido, which he teaches in his free time.

Moves Cover

My Friend in Africa

Author: Franck, Frederick

Subjects: History; Personal Experience; Africa; Medicine; Schweitzer, Dr. Albert

Age: 8, 9, 10

Grade: 3, 4, 5

ISBN: 978-0-88092-325-5

Order code: 3253

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 3253S

My Friend in Africa Cover

This is the story of a young African boy who is brought to Schweitzer’s clinic for an infection in his foot. There, he comes to admire the doctor and wishes to become a doctor himself, but before he can do so, there is much he has to learn and unlearn. He finds a place and a set of duties at the hospital, only to be sent away by Dr. Schweitzer when his foot has healed. He later returns as a doctor.

My Friend in Africa is based on a true story and is delightfully illustrated by Dr. Franck. It was originally published as a joint publication with the Schweitzer Institute for the Humanities.

This is the story of a young African boy who is brought to Schweitzer’s clinic for an infection in his foot. There, he comes to admire the doctor and wishes to become a doctor himself, but before he can do so, there is much he has to learn and unlearn. He finds a place and a set of duties at the hospital, only to be sent away by Dr. Schweitzer when his foot has healed. He later returns as a doctor.

My Friend in Africa is based on a true story and is delightfully illustrated by Dr. Franck. It was originally published as a joint publication with the Schweitzer Institute for the Humanities.

My Friend in Africa Cover

The African Term

Author: Hagen, Michael

Subjects: History; Peace Corps; Africa

Age: 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18

Grade: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Order code: 3687

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 3687S

The African Term Cover

In 1961, President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps as a governmental agency whose aims were to raise living standards in developing countries and to promote international friendship and understanding. Peace Corps projects were established at the request of the host country, and volunteer personnel usually served two years.

The African Term is set in Addis Ababa, 1962. Tom Berk, a 42-year-old accountant-turned-teacher, has answered the Peace Corps call. There are 32 male students ranging in age from 12 to 24 occupying 16 double wooden desks in his gray, non-windowed classroom. A single 60-watt bulb hangs from the center of the ceiling. All of the students wear shorts and white shirts. Some do not wear shoes. Berk wears a busi­ness suit. Here, schooling is a great honor, and the students are outwardly respectful. All eyes are on the new teacher from America who will teach English, but one pair cannot mask its dislike.

Fifteen-year-old Sahle Kifle is filled with mistrust for the American; he is clear about his reasons in his conversations with his friends. However, he is one of the fortunate to go to school, so he must abide by Berk’s rules. He is not impressed by Berk’s ability to write in Ahmeric and to speak his language or by Berk’s preference to live among the local inhabitants. But as his friends begin to appreciate the teacher’s efforts to teach with understanding and in a friendly atmos­phere, Sahle begins to soften, much against his own wishes. By the time Berk must leave, pre­maturely, to go to his sick father’s bedside back in America, an understanding friendship has developed between the two; Berk appreciates Sahle’s intelligence, and Sahle trusts Berk.

The author handles Berk’s world in Addis Ababa outside of the classroom brilliantly. Unforgettable are his trek to get there, his house boy’s antics, the foods, the smells, the grit of the dirt, and the sound of the bugs. The school hierarchy and the punishment it doles out for minor infractions is striking. And Sahle’s home life and family relationships are relat­ed as naturally as if the reader was a casual eavesdropper in the kitchen.

Michael Hagen is an accomplished stage actor and screenplay writer who was in the Peace Corps. He is also the author of the historical novels Klaus and Sail to Caribee, both of which are published by Royal Fireworks Press.

In 1961, President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps as a governmental agency whose aims were to raise living standards in developing countries and to promote international friendship and understanding. Peace Corps projects were established at the request of the host country, and volunteer personnel usually served two years.

The African Term is set in Addis Ababa, 1962. Tom Berk, a 42-year-old accountant-turned-teacher, has answered the Peace Corps call. There are 32 male students ranging in age from 12 to 24 occupying 16 double wooden desks in his gray, non-windowed classroom. A single 60-watt bulb hangs from the center of the ceiling. All of the students wear shorts and white shirts. Some do not wear shoes. Berk wears a busi­ness suit. Here, schooling is a great honor, and the students are outwardly respectful. All eyes are on the new teacher from America who will teach English, but one pair cannot mask its dislike.

Fifteen-year-old Sahle Kifle is filled with mistrust for the American; he is clear about his reasons in his conversations with his friends. However, he is one of the fortunate to go to school, so he must abide by Berk’s rules. He is not impressed by Berk’s ability to write in Ahmeric and to speak his language or by Berk’s preference to live among the local inhabitants. But as his friends begin to appreciate the teacher’s efforts to teach with understanding and in a friendly atmos­phere, Sahle begins to soften, much against his own wishes. By the time Berk must leave, pre­maturely, to go to his sick father’s bedside back in America, an understanding friendship has developed between the two; Berk appreciates Sahle’s intelligence, and Sahle trusts Berk.

The author handles Berk’s world in Addis Ababa outside of the classroom brilliantly. Unforgettable are his trek to get there, his house boy’s antics, the foods, the smells, the grit of the dirt, and the sound of the bugs. The school hierarchy and the punishment it doles out for minor infractions is striking. And Sahle’s home life and family relationships are relat­ed as naturally as if the reader was a casual eavesdropper in the kitchen.

Michael Hagen is an accomplished stage actor and screenplay writer who was in the Peace Corps. He is also the author of the historical novels Klaus and Sail to Caribee, both of which are published by Royal Fireworks Press.

The African Term Cover

Through the Door to Danger

Author: Teper, Shannon

Subjects: American History; Mystery; African-Americans; School Integration

Age: 9, 10, 11, 12

Grade: 4, 5, 6, 7

ISBN: 978-0-88092-534-1

Order code: 5341

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Through the Door to Danger Cover

A mystery with a civil rights focus

A week before classes start, twelve-year-old Craig wanders the empty, echoing halls of historic Shady River School, where his mother teaches. Craig is glad to stumble upon a new friend, a young African-American girl named Luceille, dressed in peculiar, old-fashioned clothes. Discovering that Luceille can vanish as quickly as she appears, Craig follows her through the door of the custodian’s closet and into the year 1968, the first year black and white students attended classes together. Not everyone is happy about desegregation, and Craig is disturbed by the prejudice he witnesses on his visit to the past. In the present, Craig smells smoke where there is no fire and burns his hand on a doorknob that suddenly turns red hot. Unearthing secrets that someone at Shady River has carefully buried, Craig plunges back in time and into danger, desperate to prevent a tragic death. Trapped with Luceille in the heat and smoke of the burning school, Craig discovers that the past is more difficult to change than he ever imagined.

Shannon Teper lives in a beach cottage in Ormond-by-the-Sea, Florida. Her son, Zach, attends art school; her husband, Dave, is a graphic artist and designed the cover of Through the Door to Danger. This is her first novel, but she has had nonfiction articles published in Highlights, Hopscotch, Focus-on-the-Family Clubhouse, Characters, and Dogs for Kids. Her article “Follow that Horse” appeared in Highlights and won a 2004 Magazine Merit Award from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Her article “Winter’s Tail” won Highlight’s Pewter Plate Award in 2010 for Nonfiction Feature of the Year for Beginning Readers. She won first place in the Daytona Beach News Journal’s Scary Story Contest in 2006 and has worked as editor of PetLovers Magazine. She is a teacher with a degree in elementary education from Stetson University in DeLand, Florida.

Shannon Teper says that she has been writing since she could hold a crayon. She says, “I love the mystery genre and read mysteries constantly, so I decided to write a mystery book of my own. I was inspired to write Through the Door to Danger when I visited the historic school board building converted from a school in my hometown. I was there in the summer to fill out teacher paperwork and virtually all alone in the echoing hallways. They seemed full of ghosts, and I began to wonder what ghosts might be haunting the halls and what events might have happened in the past to cause them to linger in the spooky old building. My imagination took off.”

Reviews:

"It is one of those books where you can't guess the ending, whereas some books you know the ending right from the beginning. A very good book!" – Rosie Semlyen, age 12

"This is a really well written mystery about the evolution of race relations. Very vivid. Lots of feeling. I'd recommend it to any kid who likes mysteries mixed with a little time travel." Ann Alexander

"I think it is a great children’s book. I teach fourth and fifth grade, and I read the book with my students in mind. I may use the book as a read-aloud in February as part of our focus on black history. As a teacher I can see many ways I can use this book to generate discussions around Brown v. the Board of Education, civil rights, and discrimination with my students. I will definitely be adding the book to my classroom library and recommending it to students. I enjoyed the way the author combined mystery and time travel to give a glimpse of what it was like to be a student during desegregation." – Kimberly L. Layden

"Through the Door to Danger is a perfect read. It was hard for me to put down, and I found myself up a few nights way past midnight! I enjoyed Mrs. Teper's style. I was bummed when the story ended because I enjoyed it so much." – Heidi Wright

A mystery with a civil rights focus

A week before classes start, twelve-year-old Craig wanders the empty, echoing halls of historic Shady River School, where his mother teaches. Craig is glad to stumble upon a new friend, a young African-American girl named Luceille, dressed in peculiar, old-fashioned clothes. Discovering that Luceille can vanish as quickly as she appears, Craig follows her through the door of the custodian’s closet and into the year 1968, the first year black and white students attended classes together. Not everyone is happy about desegregation, and Craig is disturbed by the prejudice he witnesses on his visit to the past. In the present, Craig smells smoke where there is no fire and burns his hand on a doorknob that suddenly turns red hot. Unearthing secrets that someone at Shady River has carefully buried, Craig plunges back in time and into danger, desperate to prevent a tragic death. Trapped with Luceille in the heat and smoke of the burning school, Craig discovers that the past is more difficult to change than he ever imagined.

Shannon Teper lives in a beach cottage in Ormond-by-the-Sea, Florida. Her son, Zach, attends art school; her husband, Dave, is a graphic artist and designed the cover of Through the Door to Danger. This is her first novel, but she has had nonfiction articles published in HighlightsHopscotchFocus-on-the-Family ClubhouseCharacters, and Dogs for Kids. Her article “Follow that Horse” appeared in Highlights and won a 2004 Magazine Merit Award from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Her article “Winter’s Tail” won Highlight’s Pewter Plate Award in 2010 for Nonfiction Feature of the Year for Beginning Readers. She won first place in the Daytona Beach News Journal’s Scary Story Contest in 2006 and has worked as editor of PetLovers Magazine. She is a teacher with a degree in elementary education from Stetson University in DeLand, Florida.

Shannon Teper says that she has been writing since she could hold a crayon. She says, “I love the mystery genre and read mysteries constantly, so I decided to write a mystery book of my own. I was inspired to write Through the Door to Danger when I visited the historic school board building converted from a school in my hometown. I was there in the summer to fill out teacher paperwork and virtually all alone in the echoing hallways. They seemed full of ghosts, and I began to wonder what ghosts might be haunting the halls and what events might have happened in the past to cause them to linger in the spooky old building. My imagination took off.”

Reviews:

"It is one of those books where you can't guess the ending, whereas some books you know the ending right from the beginning. A very good book!" – Rosie Semlyen, age 12

"This is a really well written mystery about the evolution of race relations. Very vivid. Lots of feeling. I'd recommend it to any kid who likes mysteries mixed with a little time travel."  Ann Alexander

"I think it is a great children’s book. I teach fourth and fifth grade, and I read the book with my students in mind. I may use the book as a read-aloud in February as part of our focus on black history. As a teacher I can see many ways I can use this book to generate discussions around Brown v. the Board of Education, civil rights, and discrimination with my students. I will definitely be adding the book to my classroom library and recommending it to students. I enjoyed the way the author combined mystery and time travel to give a glimpse of what it was like to be a student during desegregation." – Kimberly L. Layden

"Through the Door to Danger is a perfect read. It was hard for me to put down, and I found myself up a few nights way past midnight! I enjoyed Mrs. Teper's style. I was bummed when the story ended because I enjoyed it so much." – Heidi Wright

Through the Door to Danger Cover

Through the Door to Danger Sample Pages:

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