The Harlem Hellfighters: When Pride Met Courage

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9780060011369: The Harlem Hellfighters: When Pride Met Courage

The story of the Harlem Hellfighters is not simply one
of victory in a war. . . . It is the story of men who
acted as men, and who gave a good account of
themselves when so many people thought,
even hoped, that they would fail.

What defines a true hero?

The "Harlem Hellfighters," the African American soldiers of the 369th Infantry Regiment of World War I, redefined heroism -- for America, and for the world. At a time of widespread bigotry and racism, these soldiers put their lives on the line in the name of democracy.

The Harlem Hellfighters: When Pride Met Courage is a portrait of bravery and honor. With compelling narrative and never-before-published photographs, Michael L. Printz Award winner Walter Dean Myers and renowned filmmaker Bill Miles deftly portray the true story of these unsung American heroes.

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About the Author:

Walter Dean Myers is the New York Times bestselling author of Monster, the winner of the first Michael L. Printz Award, the current National Ambassador for Young People's Literature, and inaugural NYC Literary Honoree. Myers has received every single major award in the field of children's literature. He is the author of two Newbery Honor Books and five Coretta Scott King Awardees. He is the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults and is a three-time National Book Award Finalist as well as the first-ever recipient of the Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. He was the 2010 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, and is considered one of the preeminent writers for young people. Walter lives in Jersey City, New Jersey, with his family.



Oscar nominee BIll Miles has produced and directed numerous award-winning documentaries dedicated to African American history and achievement, including I Remember Harlem and The Different Drummer: Blacks in the Military. He has served as the official historian of the 369th Regiment Armory in Harlem. Mr. Miles lives in New York City.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-8-In writing this account of the 369th Infantry Regiment from New York City, Myers was joined by Miles, a documentary filmmaker and official historian of the group that came to be known as the Harlem Hellfighters in the early 20th century. The authors begin with an explanation of the racial conditions and wartime roles of African Americans throughout history, describe the regiment's establishment and development, and then focus on its role in World War I. As a whole, the text is disappointing and often frustrating. It lacks excitement and urgency to convey the import of these history-making soldiers or to engage readers, and there aren't many tools to enable report writers, such as an index or time line. The many archival photographs are interesting, but unfortunately they are undated and poorly captioned. Nor are there any helpful maps of the many integral locations and troop movement in the U.S. and Europe. Questionable logic and unsubstantiated opinion also call the historical soundness into question. For example, the statement that Marriage can be difficult for anyone, but for a young man without an education the pressures can be unbearable, prefaces one soldier's decision to do his duty and join up. Later, German soldiers' thoughts and feelings are presented as fact and, other than a limited Selected Bibliography, there is no documentation. Abruptly, the war ends and the book concludes with a chapter called Heroes and Men that doesn't sufficiently convey the lasting impact of the Hellfighters. Students need a book about these brave, groundbreaking, and noble men, but this is not the one.-Andrew Medlar, Chicago Public Library, IL
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