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Monday, November 11, 2013

Soldier Stories

In honor of Veteran's Day, I thought that I would highlight my favorite books about soldiers that was published this year. To find some of my all-time favorite soldier stories, you can see the post that I wrote last here.

In no particular order, here are some terrific books published this year:

Code Name Verity and Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein. Okay, in fairness, CNV should have been on last year's list, but I didn't finish it until after I wrote the post. Both of these books are INCREDIBLE and should be read by EVERYONE, especially anyone that is a fan of World War II, history, spies, women in war, survival stories...the list goes on. The audiobooks are also FIRST RATE. Seriously, both get 5 out of 5 stars from me. And when you finish these and are looking for something else, Code Name Pauline is the memoir of a real-life British Special Agent during WWII. (Grades 8 & up).

Invasion by Walter Dean Myers. Myers is back with a "prequel" of sorts to Fallen Angels and Sunrise over Fallujah. This is the story of the invasion of Normandy during WWII. Terrific sense of action, and nothing less than what you would expect from the author. (Grades 7-10).

Courage Has No Color by Tanya Lee Stone. This is the true account of the 555th airborne division, or the Triple Nickles as they were known. Excellent narrative non-fiction! (Grades 5-10).

Torn by David Massey. It is not often that stories of soldiers are the stories of women soldiers (who aren't spies). This is a book about a young woman, serving as a medic in present-day Afghanistan. This has all the details of fighting that you might want, action, mystery, and a hint of romance if you're looking for it. (Grades 8 & up).

Personal Effects by E M Kokie. What happens when a soldier doesn't come home? What becomes of his family? This book will put you right in the middle of a family torn apart by the death of their brother and son. Powerful. (Grades 9 & up).

Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson. Okay, technically this book won't be published until January of 2014, but I just finished reading it and it was one of the best books that I have read this year so I had to include it. Though this is the story of 17 year old Hayley, it is also about how she has learned to survive in her family of two. A family that is just her and her father, himself a veteran of the Gulf War and Iraq, having done a total of four tours overseas. WOW! This is such an amazing book about family, surviving, war, PTSD, forgetting vs. remembering, must read this when it comes out. (Grades 9 & up).

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