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Frontier and Pioneer Life
Pilgrims and Indians

Historical Fiction

  Sarah, Plain and Tall (Paperback) 

Sarah, Plain and Tall

Patricia MacLachlan (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Family, Frontier and Pioneer Life

In "Sarah, Plain and Tall", author Patricia MacLachlan tells a moving story about the creation of a family. In simple language, a little girl named Anna talks about how Sarah from Maine comes to the prairie to live with her, her brother, and her widowed father. This historic fiction has won many awards, including Newbery Award, Christopher Award, Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction for Children, Golden Kite Award for Fiction and Notable Children's Book. "Sarah, Plain and Tall" is one of the best children's books. Kids in second grade through sixth grade will enjoy this classic chapter book.


  The Sign of the Beaver (Paperback) 

The Sign of the Beaver

Elizabeth George Speare (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Friendship, Frontier and Pioneer Life, Native American, Survival Stories

"The Sign of the Beaver" by Elizabeth George Speare is one of the best children's books in the genre of historic fiction. Left alone to guard his family's home in the 18th century Maine, 12-year old Matt learns wilderness survival skills from a proud Native American boy Attean and teaches Attean to read. The two boys found friendship in spite of themselves. "The Sign of the Beaver" has won many awards, including the Newbery Award, ALA Notable Children's Book, Christopher Award and Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction. Children grade 4 and up will enjoy this wilderness survival story and learn about Native American culture as well as frontier and pioneer life.


  Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy (Hardcover) 

Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy (Newbery Honor Book)

Gary D. Schmidt (Hardcover)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Friendship, Race Relations and Racism

"Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy" by Gary D. Schmidt is a Newbery Honor award-winning book and well-written historical fiction for young adults. In 1912, Turner Buckminster and his parents have just moved to Phippsburg, Maine. Reverend Buckminster has been appointed the pastor of the First Congregational Church. Life is stifling and unbearable until the boy meets Lizzie Bright Griffin, a smart African-American girl from nearby Malaga Island. They form a close friendship in spite of disapproval by Reverend Buckminster and the townspeople. After the town elders decide to remove the people from the island for the sake of a prospective tourist trade, tragedies follow one after another. "Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy" depicts a disturbing picture of racism during early 20th century, a sad chapter of race relations in the US. The main characters of the story are well developed, especially Turner Buckminster, who grows up and matures right in front of reader's eyes.


  Johnny Tremain (Paperback) 

Johnny Tremain (Yearling Newbery)

Esther Forbes, Lynd Ward (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Theme: American Revolutionary War

"Johnny Tremain" by Esther Forbes, winner of the 1944 Newbery Medal, is one of the best historical fiction novels ever written for young adults. The main character of this classic book is Johnny Tremain, a sharp, arrogant and observant 14-year-old silversmith's apprentice in Boston. After an accident cripples his hand, the boy meets his best friend Rab Silsbee and gets a new job delivering newspaper for the Boston Observer. Johnny serves as a messenger for the Sons of Liberty in the days leading to the American Revolution War and becomes acquainted with historical figures like John Hancock, Samuel Adams, Paul Revere and Dr. Warren. Johnny and Rab get intimately involved in the Boston Tea Party. Rab then joins the Minutemen and was shot by British soldiers during the Battle of Lexington at the start of the Revolutionary War. Teens in 7th grade and up will enjoy this moving story.


  Strawberry Girl (Paperback) 

Strawberry Girl

Lois Lenski (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Family, Farm Life, Frontier and Pioneer Life

"Strawberry Girl" is a classic children's book by Lois Lenski. In this award-winning historic fiction, a little girl named Birdie helps her family raise strawberries on a frontier farm and earns the title of "Strawberry Girl". Along the way, they have to cope with drought, roaming animals, grass fires and unfriendly neighbors. The chapter book depicts vividly what life was like in the lake region of Florida in the early 1900's. "Strawberry Girl" is a Newbery Medal and ALA Notable Children's Books award winner.


  Skylark (Paperback) 

Skylark

Patricia MacLachlan (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Family, Frontier and Pioneer Life

"Skylark" is a sequel to "Sarah Plain and Tall" by Patricia MacLachlan. Sarah is like a skylark and has not entirely settled down to the pioneer life. When there is a severe drought on the prairie, Sarah and the children go back to Maine to live with her aunts, while Jacob stays behind to take care of their farm. Will the family be united again? The story "Skylark" appeals to children in third grade through sixth grade.


  Thanksgiving on Thursday (Paperback) 

Thanksgiving on Thursday (Magic Tree House Series #27)

Mary Pope Osborne, Sal Murdocca (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Pilgrims and Indians, Thanksgiving Stories

"Thanksgiving on Thursday" by Mary Pope Osborne is an easy-to-read chapter book that makes learning the history of thanksgiving fun and interesting. In their magic tree house, 8-year old Jack and 7-year-old Annie travel back to 1621, the year when pilgrims and Indians celebrated the first Thanksgiving in the New Plymouth Colony. They meet early settlers such as Governor Bradford and Captain Standish, and Squanto, a Wampanoag Indian. The Pilgrim girl Priscilla Mullins takes them home and shows them how to cook a turkey. Their lack of understanding of some of the vocabulary words used by the early settlers makes for a few lighted-hearted moments. When the Thanksgiving feast is over, Jack and Annie return home in their magic tree house. After witnessing the pilgrims' life, they realize they have much to be thankful for. This Thanksgiving story appeals to children in second grade and third grade.


  Sing Down the Moon (Paperback) 

Sing Down the Moon

Scott O'Dell (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Theme: Native American

"Sing Down the Moon" by Scott O'Dell is a historical fiction about Navajo Indians in the 1860's. Main character Bright Morning is a brave American Indian girl. She escapes from slavery after being captured by Spaniards. Then she is forced to move to Fort Sumner in a long march known as the Long Walk. She eventually flees for freedom. "Sing Down the Moon", an engaging Newbery honor book, appeals to children in 4th grade and up.


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