Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Historical Fiction
Dear America: With the Might of Angels

Dear America: With the Might of Angels

Fall 2011 Historical Fiction
Ages: 8 & Up
Author: Andrea David Pinkney
Publisher: Scholastic
ISBN: 978-0-545-29705-9
Hardcover Price: $16.99

Scholastic launched its Dear America series over a decade ago, and since then it has published more than two dozen books told through the journal entries and letters of young female narrators.

Andrea Davis Pinkney's 12-year-old heroine, Dawn Rae Johnson, lives in 1955 Alabama. The Supreme Court has just ruled segregation unconstitutional, and Dawn has the chance to attend the all-white school across town where the textbooks are up-to-date, the teachers are better equipped and learning opportunities are greater. Dawn is smart and ambitious. She has dreams and she knows what she must do to realize them.

What follows is a heart-wrenching story of one girl's courage and a family and community's sacrifice. Dawn's father loses his job because of the unwanted attention he receives after she enrolls in the school. The entire family is harassed and shunned by families both white and black. The horrible things printed about Dawn and her family in the local newspaper is nothing compared to the indignities, from students and teachers alike, that Dawn faces daily.

Pinkney writes a moving and informative story, told through the eyes of a brave and spunky young girl.

Teresa DiFalco   ©2011 Parents' Choice
Teresa DiFalco is an award-winning ghostwriter, writer, and mother in Vancouver, Washington. She's been a contributing editor for Parents' Choice for over ten years. She's a strong speller, a menace at badminton, and makes a decent soufflé.

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