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13 May 2010 @ 09:16 pm
diving into story  


Let me add my voice to the others who are praising this incredible book, COUNTDOWN by Deborah Wiles (Scholastic, 2010). Eleven year old Franny of the usual trials of oncoming puberty: an on again, off again friendship with Margie, an older sister who can sometimes be too possessive of her possessions, and an uncle who can be embarrassing. However, given the setting of the turbulent beginning of the 60s, there are other more serious problems including the Cuban Missile Crisis and Jim Crow laws. Wiles has fashioned an amazing blend of genres here; the narrative is interrupted, the story is interspersed, and the plot is interwoven with snippets of popular songs, Presidential speeches, dialog from Air Raid Drill films, and so much more. Add in photographs (Lucy and Desi, John and Jackie Kennedy, Krushchev) and headlines and other realia of the time and readers are absolutely transported to another time and place.

Possible ladder rungs:

DON GALLO'S TIME CAPSULE
FALLOUT
THE COMPOUND
13 DAYS IN MAY
CLAUDETTE COLVIN
MARCHING TO FREEDOM
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