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A History in Many Voices

by Louise Peacock & illustrated by Walter Lyon Krudop

Age Range: 7 - 11

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-689-80994-8
Publisher: Atheneum

Peacock travels to historic sites from the Revolutionary War and weaves the history of Washington’s crossing of the Delaware and the Battle of Trenton from three strands: straight details mingled with brief personal reflections; snippets from letters and documents of the time; and letters as they might have been penned by Harry, imagined as one of Washington’s troops. The straight narrative is the most successful, as Peacock describes Washington’s discouraged troops waiting out the bleak December following many defeats. The excerpts from actual writings offer the shiver of veracity. But Harry, the fictional soldier who writes letters to his sister, never seems as alive for readers as the other two voices used. Utterly adept are Krudop’s somber paintings; the purples and grays convey the mood of winter battle scenes, and expand on the details found in small archival etchings. (Picture book. 7-11)