Historical Fiction Book Homework Assignment #1

Historical Fiction Book Homework Assignment #1
Choose a book from the list below to read during the next 3 weeks.
My Borther Sam is Dead by James Lincoln Collier.
All his life, Tim Meeker has looked up to his brother Sam. Sam's smart and brave -and is now a part of the American Revolution. Not everyone in town wants to be a part of
the rebellion. Most are supporters of the British -- including Tim and Sam's father.
With the war soon raging, Tim know he'll have to make a choice -- between the
Revolutionaries and the Redcoats . . . and between his brother and his father.
Johnny Tremain by Esther Hoskins Forbes
The Year: 1773. The place: Boston. Johnny Tremain is fourteen and apprenticed to a
silversmith. He is gifted and lords his skills over the other apprentices, until one day his
hand is horribly burned by molten silver. Johnny’s dreams of silversmithing are over.
A depressed Johnny finds work as a dispatch rider for the Committee of Public
Safety, a job that brings him in touch with Boston patriots—and the excitement that will
lead to the Tea Party and the Battle of Lexington.
Cast Two Shadows by Ann Rinaldi
In South Carolina in 1780, fourteen-year-old Caroline sees the Revolutionary War
take a terrible toll among her family and friends and comes to understand the true nature
of war.
The Fifth of March by Ann Rinaldi
15 year old Rachel Marsh, an indentured servant in the home of John and Abigail
Adams, is caught up in the colonists' unrest that eventually escalates into the (Boston)
massacre of March 5, 1770.
The Secret of Sarah Revere by Ann Rinaldi
Thirteen-year-old Sarah Revere knows her father is a hero. But she also knows that
Paul Revere guards a secret about the start of the Revolutionary War that he'll tell no
one--not his new wife, not his best friend, not even his trusted daughter. It seems
everyone in her family has secrets. Sarah's even got one of her own--and it's tearing her
Time Enough for Drums by Ann Rinaldi
Sixteen-year-old Jem struggles to maintain the status quo at home in Trenton, New
Jersey, when the family men join the war for independence.
There are signs of rebellion in the Emerson household several years before the actual
American Revolution hits in 1776! Brought up in a relatively liberal household, Jemima
Emerson is quite a challenge for her tutor, John Reid, who is known as a Tory with strong
ties to England. How could Jem's parents be friends with a man who opposes American
freedom? Jem longs for freedom on every level, in the home and her homeland--and John
represents the forces that restrict her.
Jem and her family soon find themselves fighting for freedom in whatever ways they can
in the Revolutionary War. Before long, Jem discovers that there is much more to Mr. Reid
than she ever imagined. Her feelings about him change when Jem realizes that John shares
her love of freedom--and will risk his life to defend it.
Chains by Laurie Halse
After being sold to a cruel couple in New York City, a slave named Isabel spies for
the rebels during the Revolutionary War.
As the Revolutionary War begins, thirteen-year-old Isabel wages her own fight...for
freedom. Promised freedom upon the death of their owner, she and her sister, Ruth, in a
cruel twist of fate become the property of a malicious New York City couple, the Locktons,
who have no sympathy for the American Revolution and even less for Ruth and Isabel.
When Isabel meets Curzon, a slave with ties to the Patriots, he encourages her to spy on
her owners, who know details of British plans for invasion. She is reluctant at first, but
when the unthinkable happens to Ruth, Isabel realizes her loyalty is available to the bidder
who can provide her with freedom.
Forge by Laurie Halse
This is a tale of what it takes for runaway slaves to forge their own paths in a world
of obstacles—and in the midst of the American Revolution.
The Patriot Army was shaped and strengthened by the desperate circumstances of
the Valley Forge winter. This is where Curzon the boy becomes Curzon the young man. In
addition to the hardships of soldiering, he lives with the fear of discovery, for he is an
escaped slave passing for free. And then there is Isabel, who is also at Valley Forge—
against her will. She and Curzon have to sort out the tangled threads of their friendship
while figuring out what stands between the two of them and true freedom.
Samuel’s Choice by Richard Berleth
Fact and fiction are woven together seamlessly to create this richly textured story
of a 14-year-old black slave during the early days of the American Revolution. Samuel
works from dawn to dark in the Brooklyn flour mill owned by the stingy, strict Isaac van
Ditmas. When ferrying his master's wife and daughter to Staten Island, Samuel gazes at
the soaring seagulls and wonders what it would be like to be free. A very effective parallel
emerges as Samuel and van Ditmas's other slaves hear the sounds of drums, fifes and
cannons drifting across the water from Manhattan, signaling the colonists' determination
to win their freedom from England. Samuel seizes an opportunity to come to their aid, and
performs a heroic act that enables General Washington's weary troops to escape from the
victorious British after the Battle of Long Island.
Midnight Rider by Joan Hiatt Harlow
Fourteen-year-old Hannah is an orphan living with her cruel aunt Phoebe in Salem,
Massachusetts. Hannah recently lost her mother, and now her only comfort is her horse,
Promise. But when her money-hungry aunt sells the horse and then indentures Hannah to
the Boston family of a British general, Hannah vows to retrieve Promise at all costs, and
join the fight for freedom.
In Boston, as disagreements between the Whigs and the Tories run high and
Americans prepare for revolution, not only does Hannah begin secret meetings with the
Sons of Liberty disguised as a boy, but she is also reunited with Promise. Together with
her beloved horse, Hannah takes a bold step to join the fight for freedom and sets off on
a dangerous mission. Will she and Promise succeed?
Just Jane by William Lavender
When Lady Jane, orphaned daughter of an English earl, arrives in Charlestown,
South Carolina, in 1776, she finds herself in the middle of a heated war--a war not only
between her former country and her new home but one between the members of her own
family, whose loyalties are strongly divided in America's fight for freedom. Torn by family
feuds, the war, a secret romance, and her own growing need for independence, Jane
struggles for the courage to become the person she wants to be: just Jane.
Traitor: The Case of Benedict Arnold by Jean Fritz
Benedict Arnold always carried things too far. As a boy he did crazy things like
climbing atop a burning roof and picking a fight with the town constable. As a soldier, he
was even more reckless. He was obsessed with being the leader and the hero in every
battle, and he never wanted to surrender. He even killed his own horse once rather than
give it to the enemy.
Where did the extremism lead Arnold? To treason.
Fighting Ground by Avi
He may be just thirteen, but Jonathan knows he's ready to go to the war against
the British. He can handle a gun. He yearns to battle for glory, just like his brother and
cousin. So when Jonathan hears the tavern bell toll, calling men to fight, he runs to join
them. He doesn't realize that in just twenty-four hours, his life will be forever altered -by the war, by his fellow soldiers, and by the terrible choices he must make.
George Washington’s Socks by Elvira Woodruff
A mysterious rowboat transports five adventurous kids back in time to the eve of
the Battle at Trenton where they experience the American Revolution. Through
encounters with Hessian soldiers, revolutionaries, and even George Washington himself,
Matthew, Quentin, Hooter, Tony, and Katie watch history unfold before their eyes as they
see first-hand, the grim realities of war and the cost of freedom.
George Washington’s Spy by Elvira Woodruff
Ten-year-old Matt Carlton and six friends are accidentally swept back in time--to
Boston in 1776! The British now occupy the city, and redcoat guards are everywhere! While
the boys are being held captive by a den of Patriot spies, the girls have been taken in by a
wealthy Tory family.
The pox is rampant; danger lies around every corner--and there's no hope for
returning home to their own time. How will these seven children survive?
Guns for General Washington by Seymour Reit
Nineteen-year-old Will Knox is frustrated with life in General Washington's army. The men
have been under seige for months, and now fighting is at a standstill because of the bitter
winter cold. Even worse, the Americans have no artillery with which to defend themselves
against the British navy. But Will's brother, Henry, devises a daring plan: They will trek
acros three hundred miles of dangerous mountain wilderness to bring 183 cannons from
Fort Ticonderoga back to Boston. General Washington's officers say the journey is
impossible. But as rumors of a British offensive fly, Will and Henry spur on the men who
have bravely joined them, hoping to arrive in Boston in time to win the battle for the
2) Set time aside to read every day and keep a reading log.
This reading log will be checked at school so make sure to keep it in your binder!
3) Once you are done reading the book, complete a book report in the following
Use a sheet of blank paper to create a cover page.
On the front cover draw a picture that best represents an important event
from the story.
Include the book title and author somewhere on the cover.
This should be colorful and neat.
Your book report should include the following pages:
o This page should be titled with Illustration. It should have your name
and date on the top right corner. It should be a detailed explanation
of the drawing on your cover page. What did you draw? Why did you
choose to draw this event? What was going on in this part of the
story? Be as detailed as possible in your explanation.
o This page should be titled Protagonist. On this page write
a description of your main character. Tell about who they are and what
challenges they faced in the story.
o This page should be titled Summary. On this page write a detailed
summary of the story.
o This page should be titled Historical Connection. On this page write
an explanation of the historical situation that was dealt with in the
o This page should be titled My Thoughts. On this page you will write a
detailed explanation of what you thought about the book. Did you like
or dislike it? Explain. Give concrete examples whenever possible.
What was you favorite/least favorite part? Explain. Would you
recommend this book to anyone else? Explain.
Staple all these papers together to create your final book report.
4) Deadlines:
Reading Log with book title and author name completed
Reading Log check with 5 entries
Reading Log check with 5 entries
Final Draft of your cover page
I will be checking rough drafts for 2 of the pages
I will be checking rough drafts for the last 2 pages
Jan. 14th
Jan 22nd
Jan 28th
Jan 30th
Feb 1st
Feb 6th
1 pnt
5 pnts
5 pnts
10 pnts
4 pnts
4 pnts
Final Draft will be collected and graded on neatness, detailed
explanations, and overall presentation.
Feb 15th
60 pnts