Title: Bull RunBull Run
Author: Paul Fleischman
Pages: 104
Reading Level: 10-14
Star Rating: ★★★★

In this slim book, Paul Fleischman creates the stories of sixteen different individuals whose lives were affected by the Battle of Bull Run. Some of those individuals are Northern in sympathy – some are Southern. Some are white – some are black. Some are free – some are enslaved. All are passionate.

Fleischman does a splendid job painting a full canvas. He doesn’t pretend that all northerners – or all southerners – were motivated by the same reasons. He admits the variations and explores them. He allows his northerners to call the southerners Rebs. He allows the southerners to refer to northerners disdainfully as Yanks. He doesn’t pretend that one side is more right than the other. He just tells the stories.

Some wartime violence is included, most noticeably on page 61 and pages 92-96.

One boy lies about his qualifications for joining the army, but his bluff is quickly called.

The simile “like ghosts” is used to describe people’s complexions and actions. A boy wonders if a ghost is watching him. It is said that the spirit of George Washington is waiting to hear a major battle decisions.

‘D—‘ is used twice and ‘jack—‘ once. (All fully spelled.)

Conclusion. Interesting resource.

Review © 2014 Laura Verret

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