Navajo Code Talkers (We the People: Modern America)

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9780756510206: Navajo Code Talkers (We the People: Modern America)

Explains the role that a group of Navajo Native Americans took in World War II, who sent secretly coded messages based on the Navajo language, helping the United States and its allies win the war.

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About the Author:

Andrew Santella writes for magazines and newspapers, including GQ and the New York Times Book Review. He is the author of a number of books for young readers. He lives outside Chicago with his wife and son.

From Booklist:

Reviewed with Michael Burgan's The Titanic.

Gr. 3-6. Although many of the titles in the extensive We the People series deal with our country's revolutionary beginnings, these two cover more recent U.S. history. Titanic capitalizes on the famous tragedy's morbid allure, covering everything from the "unsinkable" behemoth's construction to the discovery of its remains on the ocean floor in 1985. While sure to attract many readers, Titanic stands to fill a much less conspicuous gap in collections than Navajo Code Talkers; few children will have heard about the Marines' secret recruitment of Navajos during World War II to develop and implement a code based on their native language. Cryptographically inclined kids will particularly appreciate the chart listing code words for the letters of the alphabet and cleverly improvised military terms, such as chicken hawk for dive bomber and eggs for bombs. Both treatments are smoothly written, concise enough for reluctant readers, and abundantly illustrated with well-chosen archival photos. Though the glossaries are unaccountably brief, other concluding resources should prove more useful, especially the prescreened Web sites accessible online--including one featuring recordings of Navajo code words. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Santella, Andrew
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