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FOR LIBERTY by Timothy Decker


The Story of the Boston Massacre

by Timothy Decker & illustrated by Timothy Decker

Age Range: 9 - 10

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-59078-608-6
Publisher: Calkins Creek/Boyds Mills

“By March 5, 1770, it was dangerous to be a soldier in Boston.” In a few lines of terse prose illustrated with densely hatched black-and-white pictures, Decker lays out the causes of the tension between Bostonians and British troops, and then delivers a blow-by-blow account of events on that March night and the ensuing trials. Along with casting a grim tone over all, his dark, crowded illustrations capture the incident’s confusion and also add details to the narrative. Despite some questionable choices—he names most of the soldiers but none of the casualties, and except for a row of coffins in one picture, never mentions how many actually died—the author leaves readers with a general understanding of what happened, and with a final scene of John Adams (who defended the soldiers in court) pondering the necessity of protecting true Liberty from the “lawless mob,” some food for thought as well. (Informational picture book. 9-10)