Kregel Publications offered a copy of Bertie's War ($7.99) to members of the TOS Homeschool Crew for reading and reviewing. This is a book geared for tweens - most likely ages 11 & up. The book is set in the fall of 1962 and centers around a young girl named Bertie who has little self-confidence and appears to be scared of everything and everyone - including her own father.
From the publisher:
Everything has been going wrong for Bertie lately.
No matter how hard she tries to do and say the right thing, Bertie keeps tumbling into embarrassing--and sometimes dangerous--situations. Her stern father has too many rules, her know-it-all sister won't stop teasing her, and her mischievous younger brother keeps getting into trouble. But what makes her really afraid are those Communist missiles pointed right at the U.S. As Bertie starts seventh grade in the fall of 1962, news of these missiles throws the nation into a panic and Bertie suddenly feels completely out of control. Can Bertie confront an ugly truth about herself and face her fears--once and for all?
For me it was an easy read as obviously it's geared to a younger set. I have to admit that the main character made me really annoyed. Once the book is resolved it all makes sense and I did remember having similar moments myself while growing up actually, but it was still annoying.
Overall though I would say it is a good book. It does take the historical background of the early 1960's with the fear of nuclear weapons and weaves that in to the story line. That's not something I've seen a lot of in other books. It might be an good choice to read while studying this time period in history.
The ending of the book saved it for me. Up until that point I just couldn't understand the point of this story. Why was it being written? What did the author hope to convey? In the last few chapters she ends up tying it up very nicely and a some excellent points were made.
Author bio from the website:
Barbara Blakey is a freelance writer and the author of the award-winning literature-based language arts program Total Language Plus. Barbara is also a nationally recognized speaker, conducting workshops and seminars for Christian women's groups and homeschooling conventions for more than fifteen years. She lives in Olympia, Washington, with her husband, Terry.
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*Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review. All opinions shared are my own. TOS Crew Members are given the product free of charge in exchange for our unbiased opinion of the product.