Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Recently Added to My TBR List

I haven't done a top ten list in a long long time. So long, in fact, that it is no longer hosted by The Broke and the Book, but is now run by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. But it still works pretty much the same: each Tuesday a topic is given and participants post their Top Ten list accordingly.

This week's topic is the top ten most recent additions to my to-be-read list, and here is mine:

How I Became a Spy by Deborah Hopkinson
Alfred A. Knopf, 2019, 272 pages

It's 1944, everyone knows the invasion of France is coming but plans must be kept top secret. One night during a bombing raid on London by the Germans, Bertie, 13, finds a small red notebook dropped by a young American girl about the same age. In it are notes about spying and some are written in code.  Who is the American girl? And why does she have this notebook? Can Bertie figure out the code? I can tell that this is going to be a fun mystery to read.

The Skylarks' War by Hilary McKay
Macmillan Children's Books, 2018, 320 pages

This is a World War I story. I read the American edition of this and decided to read the original British edition. It is the story of Clarry and her older brother Peter and their family in WWI and Clarry's efforts to carry on normally after their beloved older cousin Rupert goes off to fight in the war. 

Our Castle by the Sea by Lucy Strange
Chicken House, 2019, 336 pages

I heard nothing but good buzz about this book, and I knew I had to read it. It sounds like an exciting story set a lighthouse on the southern coast of England beginning in 1939, just as WWII breaks out. Petra and her sister have grown up in the lighthouse, hearing stories about sea monsters and Daughter of Stone legends, along with whispers about secret tunnels. It should be an exciting book and I can't wait to read it. 

Resistance by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Scholastic Press, 2018, 400 pages

I've had this book sitting on my TBR shelf for a while and I'm looking forward to a calmer year and more reading time to really get into this book. Teenage Chaya is Jewish and living in Nazi-occupied Poland. After her younger brother disappears, and her younger sister is taken away, Chaya decides to do something. Joining the resistance is perfect for her. With her fair looks, she can really get away with a lot right under the eyes of the Nazis. Eventually, she finds herself fighting in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. I've read a lot of resistance stories and this one sounds just riveting. 

Standing Up Against Hate: How Black Women in the Army 
Helped Change the Course of WWII
Mary Cronk Farrell, 2019, 208 pages

Anyone who has read Farrell's earlier book, Pure Grit: How WWII Nurses in the Pacific Survived Combat and Prison Camp, knows they are going to find the same well-written, well-researched honest approach to this book. Although black women could enlist in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC), they faced a much more difficult life than their white counterparts. These brace women faced segregation, discrimination, prejudice, second-class conditions, and yet they served with honor, valor, and dignity. This should prove to be an informative look at the all-black 6888th Central Postal Delivery Battalion, the only female battalion to serve overseas under the leadership of Charity Adams.

Air Raid Search and Rescue (Soldier Dogs #1)
written by Marcus Sutter, illustrated by Pat Kinsella
Turtleback Books, 2018, 224 pages

On of my kids brought this book to me because he knows I like dog stories and there aren't too many WWII books about them. Matt, 12, and his American family are already living Canterbury in the UK when war breaks out. When the United States enters the war, Matt's older brother Eric enlists in the Marines, and gives Matt his pet German Shepard, Chief. Meanwhile the family are fostering a German Jewish girl named Rachel, who had been part of the Kindertransport. My student says I'll love this book, and I can believe it. 

Finding Langston by Lesa Cline-Ransome
Holiday House, 2018, 112 pages

This sounds like it will be a small but powerful book. The student I lent my copy to loved it. After his mother dies in 1946, Langston, 11, and his father move to Chicago from Alabama. There, in a library open to everyone and not just whites, Langston discovers the poet his mother named him after. Though this is technically not a war story, it does introduced young readers to the segregation and the dangers that African Americans faced resulting in the Port Chicago Disaster of 1944.

Stolen Girl by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch
Scholastic Press, 2019, 208 pages

This is actually a reissue of Stolen Child, and a part of a trilogy of connected stories beginning with Making Bombs for Hitler and The War Below. After the Nazis shoot their mother and the Jews she had been hiding, Lida, 8, and her younger sister Larissa, 5, are kidnapped from their grandmother's home in the Ukraine and sent by cattle car to Germany, along with all the other Ukrainian children the Nazis took. Making Bombs for Hitler is Lida's story and Stolen Girl is Larissa's story, whose name has been changed to Nadia and I suspect it will bring these stories full circle.

The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
Harper, 2018, 262 pages

I've read the reviews and articles about this book, and while I understand it is flawed, I would still like to read it. 

Lovely War by Julie Berry
Viking BFYR, 2019, 480 pages

This is also a WWI story, and while it is a love story, it is also a fantasy. It's just difficult to talk about without have read it, but I do know seeks to answer the ago-old question: Why are Love and War eternally drawn to one another? I'm looking forward to discovering whether Berry has come up with the answer.

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