I "Wanda" What to Read

I “Wanda” What to Read?

by Wanda Bingaman

If you have been keeping up with “Wanda’s World” through the Pitt County Women’s Journal blog, then you know my summer has been FULL of reading! Wait- what?!?! You DON’T read the PCWJ blog?!?! Do yourself a favor and start reading it! The wanderings of my mind are just a really small part- there are amazing ladies who write about ALL kinds of topics!!!

I digress.

I am here to talk about READING!! I want to share some of my favorite books from this summer. I read (and listened to!) so many books- adult,
young adult, non-fiction. When I started working in a middle school, I was surprised at how interested middle schoolers were with World War II.
And not just the Holocaust, all parts of WWII. Seriously, there are so, so many books on this topic.  And their interest is not morbid,
the kids are truly interested! What’s that saying? Something like if you don’t know history, you’re doomed to repeat it?

The War that Saved My Life
by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
The War I Finally Won
By Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

These books start with the children leaving London when the Germans started bombing the city. It tells of a brother and sister who leaves London and goes to live in a small village. They have schooling, food, and fresh air for the first time in their lives.

Prisoner B-3087, Grenade, & Projekt 1065
by Alan Gratz.

All three of these were about WWII, but so completely different! Prisoner (one of my all time favorites!) is based on a true story about a teenaged boy surviving multiple concentration camps. Grenade is set in the Pacific on Okinawa that is held by the Japanese. It’s about a native to the island and a young American solider. The war in the Pacific is a topic that does not have a lot of books written about it. Projekt is about an Irish family living in Germany- the father is the Irish ambassador. Ireland was a neutral country, on paper, and while the family is assigned to Germany, they did not agree with what was happening. Alan Gratz is a fabulous author with many titles under his belt. I love how all his books are completely different. Just because you have read an Alan Gratz, the next one you will read will be so different!

Code Talker
by Joseph Bruchac

This is a historical fiction book about the Navajo code talkers. What a most amazing topic I had no idea about. These Native American men were true heroes that no one knew about for decades!

by Steve Shienken
by Laura Hildebrand

I listened to these this summer. Bomb is about the making of the atomic bomb. I knew about the bombs that were dropped and had an understanding about the role New Mexico played in the building. I had no idea how much work and spying went into the making of the bombs! And how that really lead to the Cold War. This was such an interesting book! I listened to the Young Reader’s version of Unbroken. It is the story of Louis Zamperini- an Olympic athlete, castaway, and prisoner of war survivor. The way this man survived and what he survived- holy cow!! I found it interesting how the two books overlapped- Zamperini was in a Japanese internment camp when the bombs were dropped.

This is just a quick overview of these fantastic books about World War II. If that period of time interests you or you want to learn more, these are young adult titles and will give you a small taste of these topics. As I tell people, young adult does not mean “kids only”- that genre is FULL of fantastic books that will leave you wanting more!!

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