Thought for the Day:
“A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.”
~ Bob Dylan ~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Our heroes are often underdogs, especially in middle-grade fiction. Charles Yellowitz has a good post HERE on Legends of Windemere with 7 Tips to Writing Underdog Heroes. https://legendsofwindemere.com/2020/06/26/7-tips-to-writing-underdog-heroes/
Angela Ackerman has a guest post on Writer in the Storm about character behavior that is terrific. Check it out HERE.
We all want to paint good pictures with our words. HERE is an article from Writer’s Digest that gives you 11 Secrets to Writing an Effective Character Description. Lots of ads pop up, but it’s worth getting past them. I particularly like #7 and #8.
The long, slow slog that is 2020 continues with Covid at the head of a very unhappy parade. At least the wearing of masks seems to have finally become accepted by people in both political parties and is no longer a political football. Maybe we can finally turn a corner on this nasty disease. Stay safe, everyone! I know I am hunkering down and staying as safe as I can.
I know a lot of people use e-readers and read books on their computers. I have a niece who reads novels on her phone. I like good old-fashioned books. I like the feel of them, the heft of them. I like turning pages. Heck, I even like the smell of books. I just don’t read ebooks. EXCEPT when it’s a new book by Kelly Milner Halls, and it isn’t available any other way yet. I love everything I’ve read by her, and when I was offered a peek at one of her new books that isn’t out yet, I made an exception to my own rule. It was so worth it. Here are my thoughts on Voices of Young Heroes by Kelly Milner Halls. It is coming out August 4, but you can preorder it now.
There were plenty of heroes in World War II, but many of them are not well known. Kelly Milner Halls has found the inspiring stories of twenty brave, strong, young people who resisted and fought against the Nazi regime and their nefarious missions. Taking on such powerful and truly evil people takes the kind of courage and intelligence few young people believe they have. The book opens with a 3-part introduction to WWII — How it Happened, Who was Involved, and The Major Events and the Outcome. Halls distills a lot of information into these few pages in language young people will understand. It is just enough to give them a good understanding without overwhelming them. The twenty accounts of mostly-unfamiliar names (most kids have heard of Anne Frank, but the others are unlikely to be known) will be eye-opening for readers as they see through other young people’s experiences what it was like to be faced with and coming to recognize Hitler and the Nazi party for what they really were. Many lost their lives in their fight against that evil regime. Today’s youngsters will be astonished at how very young some of these heroes were and the amazing things they did. They became forgers, smugglers, guides, spies, soldiers, sailors, and more, saving hundreds of lives as they did their work.
Kelly Milner Halls has her finger firmly on the pulse of young people, and her books reflect that connection. Her research is impeccable and it shines through on every page. Her writing is lively and fascinating to read. This is the kind of book that will make readers out of reluctant readers, turn kids on to history who think history is boring, and show kids how exciting non-fiction can be. This belongs in the hands of every middle-grader and up really through high school. It is easily interesting enough to keep older teens engaged. Don’t miss this one.
Be sure to check back next week. I plan on having a giveaway then. Don’t forget to check for other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts at the Greg Pattridge’s blog HERE.