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The Unsung Hero of Birdsong, USA

The Unsung Hero of Birdsong, USA by Brenda Woods
Jan 08, 2019 | 208 Pages
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  • Hardcover $16.99

    Jan 08, 2019 | 208 Pages | Middle Grade (10 and up)

  • Ebook $9.99

    Jan 08, 2019 | 208 Pages | Middle Grade (10 and up)

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* “If Opie Taylor from The Andy Griffith Show wrote a book about Mayberry’s racism, the voice would be that of Gabriel Haberlin, the 12-year-old white boy who is saved from near tragedy by Meriwether Hunter, a ‘colored’ man. . . . The author’s use of the word ‘colored’ isn’t gratuitous—the book’s setting is Birdsong, South Carolina, in 1946. The word also sets the tone of the town’s postwar racial references and bigotry. . . . An affecting—and realistic—story. Another stellar outing from the always-solid Woods.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Even readers who have been taught about segregation in the South are likely to deepen their knowledge of the nuanced history through the novel’s handling of how white and African-American veterans were treated differently after WWII. The characters of impressionable Gabriel and Meriwether, whose patience is tried by society’s unfair rules, ring true as the story shows that ‘the world, including Birdsong USA, isn’t always pretty.’”—Publishers Weekly

“There are many books that show segregation and its corrosive effects through the eyes of both white and black children, and in Gabriel’s engaging first-person narrative, one can almost see the wheels turning as he realizes what life is like for Hunter and his family, especially after he learns the vet can’t speak of his distinguished service due to white attitudes. . . . Gabriel’s strong and questioning voice will have appeal for middle-graders, and the story will give them a history lesson as well.”Booklist

“Gabriel witnesses the fear, pain, anger, and sense of powerlessness faced by African Americans living under Jim Crow. This title presents the reality of racism in the mid-20th century, as seen through the perspective of a young white boy. Hand to readers looking for historical fiction or those who enjoy the works of Christopher Paul Curtis and Rita Williams Garcia.”—School Library Journal

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