Mary Downing Hahn Stepping on the Cracks

ISBN 13: 9780547076607

Stepping on the Cracks

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9780547076607: Stepping on the Cracks

In 1944, when her brother is overseas fighting in World War Ii, eleven-year-old Margaret changes her mind about the school bully, Gordy, after she discovers he is hiding his own brother, a deserter.

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About the Author:

MARY DOWNING HAHN, a former children’s librarian, is the award-winning author of many popular ghost stories, including Wait Till Helen Comes, which is being adapted for film. An avid reader, traveler, and all-around arts lover, Ms. Hahn lives in Columbia, Maryland, with her cat, Oscar. Visit her online at www.marydowninghahnbooks.com.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-8-- The complex arguments for and against pacifism are woven into this involving story of a girl's experiences on the home front during World War II. Margaret, 11, and her boisterous friend Elizabeth hate the school bully, Gordy. They discover that a man living in the woods whom they had thought of as crazy is actually Gordy's gentle brother, who has deserted a war he feels he cannot morally fight. When Stuart nearly dies of pneumonia, the girls join forces with Gordy to get help and they gain insight into Gordy's difficult life with his alcoholic, abusive father. Well-drawn characters and a satisfying plot keep this from deteriorating into a message novel. The issues raised are presented from diverse points of view, and no easy answers are given. Margaret struggles with her feelings about her brother fighting (and ultimately dying) in a war that Stuart has deserted. She realizes, however, that Stuart's conscientious objection is not the black-and-white, coward vs. patriot matter her parents believe it to be. Although clearly set in the '40s with characters that are true to their time, their problems and feelings are not dated and should interest today's readers. There is plenty of action and page-turning suspense to please those who want a quick read, but there is much to ponder and reflect on as well. --Louise L. Sherman, Anna C. Scott School, Leonia, NJ
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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