Rave Reviews Log: Historical Fiction

June 23, 2010

This Means War!

By Ellen Wittlinger
Era: 1962 United States/Cold War
Rating: 4 stars

Juliet has been best friends all her life with Lowell, the boy across the alley.  But suddenly now that they are in 5th grade, Lowell is being friends with the Lambert twins and acting like girls--even Juliet--are a disease.  Juliet is hurt, and to add to that, her family's grocery store isn't doing all that well, what with the new supermarket moving into town.  Then Juliet meets Patsy, a new girl whose family has just moved to town like many others to work at the local air force base.  Patsy is brave and outgoing and Juliet thinks that maybe she has found a new best friend.  But tension is in the air when it is announced that Cuba is holding missiles for Russia--missles that could hit the United States and blow it up any old time.  As the nation teeters on the brink of war, everyone is worried.  But when the boys, including neighborhood bully Bruce, claim that girls can't do everything boys can, Patsy issues a challenge.  The girls and boys will have their own personal set of cnotests to prove who is better.   Juliet isn't so sure about this new "war," but goes along with it.  But as the contests escalate, maybe a real war isn't any more dangerous than what the kids are doing.  Can Juliet end this war before it is too late?  A very interesting read set during the Cold War that will make its readers think as they enjoy it.


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