New Historical Fiction

The Nazi Hunters: How a Team of Spies and Survivors Captured the World's Most Notorious Nazi by Neal Bascomb

Reading Level:  Ages 12 & up

This nonfiction book reads like a fast paced spy thriller. Israeli Mossad agents, German and Israeli government officials, and private citizens worked together to abduct  Nazi war criminal  Adolf Eichman and bring him to justice.  Eichman, responsible for the deaths of six million Jews, disappeared after the war ended.  Then there came  a report that he was living in Argentina.

All the elements of a spy novel are here: a dangerous mission, false identities, safe houses, and split second timing, but this is a true, well documented  history.

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The Lightning Dreamer: Cuba's Greatest Abolotionist by Margarita Engle

Reading Level:  Ages 12 and up

This inspiring free verse novel is the fictionalized story of the early teen years of  Cuban poet/abollitionist Gertrudis Gomez de Avellaneda (1814-1873.)  At thirteen, Tula uses her poetry and plays to express her views about freedom, both for the slaves of Cuba and for the young girls who are sold into arranged marriages to the highest bidder.  In defiance of her family's wishes  Tula is determined to live a free life.  Other poems give added dimension as the reader hear from her supportive brother, the nuns who nuture Tula, her disgusted mother, and the freed slave who has not  had the courage to leave. Tula's is a beautiful and powerful story.

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The Dogs of Winter by Bobbie Pyron

Reading Level: Grades 5 - 8

Truth can be much stranger than fiction and fiction based on truth can make a great story.  Inspired by the life of Ivan Mishukov, Ivan Andreovich is a five-year-old boy who was orphaned in post-Soviet Russia, left on the streets to fend for himself, and adopted by a pack of wild dogs.

Life for street children is a battle to survive.  Hunger, cold, roving gangs of both adults and older children make survival tenuous.  Ivan finds his place with a family of dogs.  Ivan and the dogs share what food they have and provide warmth and protection for each other.  But more than that, the dogs love Ivan as he loves them.   Ivan becomes more and more like his dog family.  While humans can be uncaring or cruel, it is the dogs who show the most "humanity."

Ultimately, Ivan Andreovich , like the real Ivan, is rescued.

 

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