Book Review: Dear America: With the Might of Angels, The Diary of Dawnie Rae Johnson (Hadley, Virginia 1954) by Andrea Davis Pinkney

Meet Dawnie Rae, "Dear America"'s first 20th century¬†African American heroine, a vibrant and indestructible girl. Dawnie is bright and dreams of becoming a doctor, but she lives in the midst of Jim Crow Virginia in the 1950s, where blacks are segregated from whites, given a much poorer education than in white schools, and have very … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: With the Might of Angels, The Diary of Dawnie Rae Johnson (Hadley, Virginia 1954) by Andrea Davis Pinkney

Book Review: Dear America: Like the Willow Tree, The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce (Portland, Maine 1918) by Lois Lowry

Lydia begins her first entry sounding like a rather spoiled young woman. But very soon after, she and her brother lose everything when their parents and baby sister die from the Influenza. Their aunt and uncle, who are burdened with too many children, send Lydia and her brother to live in the Shaker community at … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Like the Willow Tree, The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce (Portland, Maine 1918) by Lois Lowry

Book Review: Dear America: The Fences Between Us, The Diary of Piper Davis (Seattle, Washington 1941) by Kirby Larson

This is one of my favorite DA reading experiences. Piper lives with her father, a preacher, and her brother and sister. There are many Japanese Americans in her neighborhood and school, and her church is mostly Japanese. But after Japan bombs Pearl Harbor, life begins to change for Piper, as now she is considered suspicious … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: The Fences Between Us, The Diary of Piper Davis (Seattle, Washington 1941) by Kirby Larson

Book Review: Dear America: Hear My Sorrow, The Diary of Angela Denoto, a Shirtwaist Worker (New York City, 1909) by Deborah Hopkinson

In this beautiful yet doleful tale, we follow Angela Denoto, a Sicilian-born teen at the turn-of-the-century in New York City. Although Angela is bright and the only member of her family who can read, as well as speak and write in English, her father's physical condition requires her and her elder sister, Luisa, to work … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Hear My Sorrow, The Diary of Angela Denoto, a Shirtwaist Worker (New York City, 1909) by Deborah Hopkinson

Book Review: Dear America: When Christmas Comes Again, The World War I Diary of Simone Spencer (New York City to the Western Front, 1917) by Beth Seidel Levine

Simone Spencer is DA's oldest narrator at eighteen years old. Born to a fairly well-to-do family in New York City with an American father and French mother, Simone is bilingual in the English and French languages. After she graduates high school, Simone learns that all American men between the ages of 21 and 30 are … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: When Christmas Comes Again, The World War I Diary of Simone Spencer (New York City to the Western Front, 1917) by Beth Seidel Levine

Book Review: Dear America: Survival in the Storm, The Dust Bowl Diary of Grace Edwards (Dalhart, Texas 1935) by Katelan Janke

This is a wonderful DA diary taking place during the Great Depression in the Texas Panhandle. At this time, those who lived in the prairies were hit for several years by terrible drought and dust storms (caused by farmers' improper treatment of topsoil coupled with strong winds and a severe drought) that nearly ruined the … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Survival in the Storm, The Dust Bowl Diary of Grace Edwards (Dalhart, Texas 1935) by Katelan Janke

Book Review: Dear America: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, The Diary of Bess Brennan (Perkins School for the Blind, 1932) by Barry Denenberg

Bess has an accident and must learn how to live her life anew now that she has gone blind. She attends the Perkins School for the Blind where she interacts with teachers and other blind students who become her friends. When she visits home, she must learn to adjust and to feel like a part … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, The Diary of Bess Brennan (Perkins School for the Blind, 1932) by Barry Denenberg

Book Review: Dear America: A Time for Courage, The Suffragette Diary of Kathleen Bowen (Washington, D.C. 1917) by Kathryn Lasky

Kat is a fourteen-year-old girl living in Washington, D.C. in the year of the picket lines for women's suffrage. While Kat's father, a doctor, is more progressive and generally accepting of Kat's mother's picketing and women's rights activism, Kat's Uncle Bayard is a harsh tyrant to his own wife (also a suffragette) and family, and … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: A Time for Courage, The Suffragette Diary of Kathleen Bowen (Washington, D.C. 1917) by Kathryn Lasky

Book Review: Dear America: Where Have All the Flowers Gone? The Diary of Molly MacKenzie Flaherty (Boston, Massachusetts 1968) by Ellen Emerson White

This is the story of the all-Irish-American Flaherty family in the 1960s. Molly is that girl in school who is outgoing and popular, her brother is the handsome jock whom everyone adores, her dad is a fiery Irish-bred firefighter, and her mother is a devout Catholic. But Molly is torn about her opinions regarding the … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Where Have All the Flowers Gone? The Diary of Molly MacKenzie Flaherty (Boston, Massachusetts 1968) by Ellen Emerson White

Book Review: Dear America: Early Sunday Morning, The Pearl Harbor Diary of Amber Billows (Hawaii, 1941) by Barry Denenberg

It is 1941, and just as Amber Billows and her family are beginning to adjust to their new life in Washington, D.C. (after having moved between multiple other cities), Amber's father, a quirky Harvard-educated reporter,¬†announces that they are moving yet again, this time to the virtually unheard of U.S. territory of Hawaii. Amber is quick … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Early Sunday Morning, The Pearl Harbor Diary of Amber Billows (Hawaii, 1941) by Barry Denenberg

Book Review: Dear America: Christmas After All, The Great Depression Diary of Minnie Swift (Indianapolis, Indiana 1932) by Kathryn Lasky

This DA diary is a very readable book. Set in Indianapolis, Indiana during the Great Depression, Minnie (short for Minerva) is the youngest of four sisters, with a younger brother. Her father is out of work and her mother has already had to close off half of the rooms in the house to save on … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Christmas After All, The Great Depression Diary of Minnie Swift (Indianapolis, Indiana 1932) by Kathryn Lasky

Book Review: Dear America: My Secret War, The World War II Diary of Madeline Beck (Long Island, New York 1942) by Mary Pope Osborne

Maddie Beck and her mother live in a boarding house on Long Island, New York, while her father, a naval officer, is stationed overseas in the Pacific. Out of devotion to her father, Maddie makes friends in her new town and, with her new beau Johnny, starts a group for young people to help with … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: My Secret War, The World War II Diary of Madeline Beck (Long Island, New York 1942) by Mary Pope Osborne

Book Review: Dear America: Color Me Dark, The Diary of Nellie Lee Love, The Great Migration North (Chicago, Illinois 1919) by Patricia McKissack

Nellie Lee Love lives with her family at their undertaking business in the Corners of Tennessee. The Loves are a close-knit family, and Nellie is especially close with her sister, who is the same age as her most of the year, Erma Jean. One interesting character aspect in this book is that Erma Jean loves … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Color Me Dark, The Diary of Nellie Lee Love, The Great Migration North (Chicago, Illinois 1919) by Patricia McKissack

Book Review: Dear America: Voyage on the Great Titanic, The Diary of Margaret Ann Brady (RMS Titanic, 1912) by Ellen Emerson White

After tragically losing their parents, Margaret Ann Brady and her brother William are orphaned and penniless on the streets of London. William is hard-pressed to find work, and decides it best for his young sister to be put in the care of the nuns at St. Abernathy's Orphanage, while he voyages to America to find … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Voyage on the Great Titanic, The Diary of Margaret Ann Brady (RMS Titanic, 1912) by Ellen Emerson White

Book Review: Dear America: Dreams in the Golden Country, The Diary of Zipporah Feldman, a Jewish Immigrant Girl (New York City, 1903) by Kathryn Lasky

Zipporah and her family are Jewish immigrants to the U.S. in the early 1900s. This book could have focused more upon Jewish culture, family values, and life in America in the early twentieth century, but the narrator was more consumed with her fascination with drama and acting. Instead of the story of a Jewish immigrant, … Continue reading Book Review: Dear America: Dreams in the Golden Country, The Diary of Zipporah Feldman, a Jewish Immigrant Girl (New York City, 1903) by Kathryn Lasky