REVOLUTIONARY FRIENDS. GENERAL GEORGE WASHINGTON AND THE MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE - 2013
The Marquis de Lafayette anxiously approaches the doors of City Tavern. His mission: to meet his hero, General George Washington, and sign on to the patriot cause. Lafayette had traveled far—all the way from France—and had overcome many obstacles just to get to Philadelphia. Will the general accept his aid? Lafayette’s youth, determination,and smarts impress Washington, and the relationship that results from that first meeting is revolutionary. Their friendship builds alliances between France and America at just the right time.
How did a French teen nobleman become George Washington’s “adopted son”? This new book explores this most unique and fascinating friendship, which proved crucial to American victory.
Teachers: view a pdf version of the Teachers' Guide here.
SAVED BY THE MUSIC - WestSide Books, 2009
The last place fifteen-year-old Willow wants to spend her summer is on a run-down former coffee barge in a boatyard in Rockaway, New York. But that’s where her aunt is converting the broken down hulk into a floating concert hall and Willow has no choice but to help; her unstable mom has kicked her out for the summer. Willow’s miserable when she sees that there isn’t even a shower on the barge, and she has to deal with Craig, the leering hunk of a construction worker working with her aunt. The only bright spot is Axel, an older teenage boy living alone on a neighboring sailboat. Introverted and mysterious, he has the soul of a poet, a deep, philosophical mind, and loves Shakespeare. He’s also scarred by a painful, disturbing past, and the two bond through their shared pain and laughter. But when devastating events threaten to destroy them, Willow and Axel struggle to save each other – and themselves – before it’s too late.
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THE GIRL NEXT DOOR - WestSide Books, 2010
In THE GIRL NEXT DOOR, two teens are forced to make some very grown-up decisions when one of them is diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Sixteen year old Samantha has been best friends with seventeen year old Jesse since she moved into the New York high-rise apartment next door to his thirteen years ago. Jesse is their school's poster child for popularity: good-looking, a star athlete, even Romeo in the school play. On opening night he collapses on stage. That's when doctors discover the unthinkable: a tumor on his spine. His type of cancer is virtually incurable – 97% of those diagnosed die within ten months.
Jesse shuts down, refusing to see most of his friends. He submits to treatments of chemo and radiation, but he doesn't possess hope. Sam is the one person he’ll talk to. He convinces his mom to let her sleep in another bed in his room, saying he's afraid to die alone.
That’s when Jess and Sam make a startling, bittersweet discovery: they’ve been in love all along.
THE GIRL NEXT DOOR addresses the universal question: In an unpredictable world, how can we possibly feel safe?
BY THE SWORD - Calkins Creek Books, 2007
Meet Benjamin Tallmadge, a young teacher in the midst of Revolutionary America. Spurred by the cry for freedom and the blood spilled at the battles of Lexington and Concord, Benjamin sacrifices his career and his dreams to enlist in George Washington’s army. Follow Benjamin and his beloved horse, Highlander, into fiery combat at the Battle of Long Island. Hear cannons blast, smell gunpowder, watch the enemy barrel forward as Benjamin must fire or die. Witness grisly war as Benjamin grapples with the realities of being a soldier, and see whether he and the rest of the battered Americans can escape from Brooklyn unscathed. Selene Castrovilla has woven Benjamin Tallmadge’s own account with additional details from primary-source documents and extensive research to deliver this thrilling narrative of one of American history’s most harrowing moments. An action-adventure story with heart, BY THE SWORD will have you rooting for Benjamin as he gives his all for his country, and for his horse.
UPON SECRECY - Calkins Creek Books, 2009
July 1780. Four grueling years into the war, George Washington’s scrappy rebels had become an army to be reckoned with. Now came a real break: France was joining their fight. A French fleet was sailing into Newport, Rhode Island. It carried sorely needed soldiers, weapons, and supplies. But George Washington worried. Did the British know? Would they attack the French? Without this foreign aid, the American cause could well be lost. Washington needed answers, fast. He turned to his most trusted source: the Culper Spy Ring. For two years the Culper had provided Washington with accurate information. The problem was how long they took! Could they deliver quickly this time? Washington prayed they would. Join the Culpers as they attempt their most important – and dangerous – mission. Follow them through British-occupied territory, risking everything in the name of liberty. Can they ferret out the information? Will it be in time? Can they remain undetected and unsuspected? Upon secrecy, their success depends.
EVOLUTION is a novel about truth and consequence. Seventeen-year-old Darwin was abused by his alcoholic mother growing up. He never knew love or affection, and he treats women as he had been treated — with hate and violence. When he meets Karyn, the sixteen-year-old half sister he never knew he had, he discovers he’s capable of caring. But he’s still filled with rage at the father who left him at his mother’s mercy. He wants love, but he also wants revenge. Which emotion is stronger?
EVOLUTION confronts the darkness lurking in everyone, and tears down the barriers dividing “us” and “them.” We are all of the same descent.
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