Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones

What a creative novel! Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones is set on a tiny, tropical island called Bougainville, down near New Zealand. The story takes place during Bougainville’s civil war in 1991, while the island is blockaded. All of the Bougainvillians are black, except for one eccentric white man, Mr. Watts. Our narrator is thirteen-year-old Matilda, … Continue reading Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones

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Dear America: With the Might of Angels, The Diary of Dawnie Rae Johnson (Hadley, Virginia 1954) by Andrea Davis Pinkney

Meet Dawnie Rae, "Dear America"'s first 20th century African American heroine, a vibrant and indestructible girl. Dawnie is bright and dreams of becoming a doctor, but she lives in the midst of Jim Crow Virginia in the 1950s, where blacks are segregated from whites, given a much poorer education than in white schools, and have very … Continue reading Dear America: With the Might of Angels, The Diary of Dawnie Rae Johnson (Hadley, Virginia 1954) by Andrea Davis Pinkney

Dear America: Like the Willow Tree, The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce (Portland, Maine 1918) by Lois Lowry

Lydia begins her first entry sounding like a rather spoiled young woman. But very soon after, she and her brother lose everything when their parents and baby sister die from the Influenza. Their aunt and uncle, who are burdened with too many children, send Lydia and her brother to live in the Shaker community at … Continue reading Dear America: Like the Willow Tree, The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce (Portland, Maine 1918) by Lois Lowry

Dear America: My Face to the Wind, the Diary of Sarah Jane Price, a Prairie Teacher (Broken Bow, Nebraska 1881) by Jim Murphy

Sarah Jane is dragged all the way to Broken Bow, Nebraska by her father who was planned to teach there. Tragically, her father dies, leaving her an orphan with nothing, stranded in Broken Bow. The innkeeper with whom Sarah Jane and her father had stayed knows that Sarah Jane will soon have no money to … Continue reading Dear America: My Face to the Wind, the Diary of Sarah Jane Price, a Prairie Teacher (Broken Bow, Nebraska 1881) by Jim Murphy

Dear America: My Secret War, The World War II Diary of Madeline Beck (Long Island, New York 1942) by Mary Pope Osborne

Maddie Beck and her mother live in a boarding house on Long Island, New York, while her father, a naval officer, is stationed overseas in the Pacific. Out of devotion to her father, Maddie makes friends in her new town and, with her new beau Johnny, starts a group for young people to help with … Continue reading Dear America: My Secret War, The World War II Diary of Madeline Beck (Long Island, New York 1942) by Mary Pope Osborne

Dear America: My Heart is on the Ground, The Diary of Nannie Little Rose, A Sioux Girl (Carlisle Indian School, Pennsylvania 1880) by Ann Rinaldi

Nannie Little Rose leaves her home and family to become educated and integrated into white society among a diverse student body of other Native American tribes at the Carlisle Indian School in Pennsylvania. While some have viewed this book as racist, and have accused this author of presenting this integration of the natives out of … Continue reading Dear America: My Heart is on the Ground, The Diary of Nannie Little Rose, A Sioux Girl (Carlisle Indian School, Pennsylvania 1880) by Ann Rinaldi