THE LITTLE SHIPS: The Heroic Rescue at Dunkirk in World War II by Louise Borden

THE LITTLE SHIPS: The Heroic Rescue at Dunkirk in World War II

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A moving, fictionalized account of the ""miracle of Dunkirk,"" in which an armada of 861 ships ferried to safety across the English Channel over 300,000 Allied soldiers who had been trapped in northern France by the Germans. Added to the inherent historical drama of the story is the piquancy of its narration by a young girl from the English village of Deal, who dons her older brother's clothes to aid her father on the family's fishing boat, the Lucy. Spare, expressive text and Foreman's illustrations, as sullen in hue as the sky over the Channel, combine to bring the heroic story vividly to life: the uneasy chill of the ""silent parade"" over the waters to the sandy, flat beaches of Dunkirk, the thousands of soldiers waiting for rescue; the ""mess of an army on the run""--loose French horses, barking dogs, abandoned equipment. Safe at home later, the girl listens to a broadcast of Churchill's thundering ""We shall fight"" speech (an excerpt appears under the author's note) and is ""glad that Mr. Churchill didn't keep his words in his hands and in his eyes in the way of Deal fishermen."" An eloquent ending to a book that makes a near-mythical event of WW II real and deeply personal.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1997
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: McElderry