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The Story Behind Willa Cather's My Antonia
ISBN: 9781403482112
Author: Raum, Elizabeth
Publisher: Capstone Pr Inc
Published: September 2006
Retail: $33.50    OUR PRICE: $2.99
     You Save 91%
Binding Type: Library Binding
Qty:
Annotation: Provides a background for Willa Cather's famous novel by looking at relevant biographical details about her life and providing historical details that place the story in context, with a literary analysis of the novel.
Additional Information
BISAC category: JUVENILE NONFICTION / Literary Criticism & Collections
Target Age Group: Age 12-14
Target Grade: Grade 7-9
Grade level: Grade 7-9
Physical Information: 0.42" H x 6.68" L x 9.44" W
Bargain Category: Upper Elementary, Non-Fiction, Middle School, History, Biographies
Grade level(s): 7th, 8th, 9th
 
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2007 Spring)
This series effectively places literary classics in context without simply regurgitating plot and theme. The authors' biographical details are combined with historical and cultural background, some of which is vague (a too-broad overview of the 1930s in [cf2]Mice[cf1]) or confusingly anachronistic (a profile of Barack Obama in [cf2]Mockingbird[cf1]). All volumes are busily illustrated with numerous maps and archival pictures. Reading list, timeline, websites. There are five other fall 2006 books in this series. Glos., ind. [Review covers these History in Literature titles: [cf2]John Steinbeck's[cf1] Of Mice and Men, [cf2]Willa Cather's[cf1]My Ántonia, [cf2]Harper Lee's[cf1] To Kill a Mockingbird, [cf2]Toni Morrison's[cf1] The Bluest Eye, and [cf2]George Orwell's[cf1] Animal Farm.] Copyright 2007 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2007 April)

Gr 7 Up— These four books are a mixed bag. They follow a similar pattern, e.g., Mockingbird opens by interweaving a biography of Harper Lee with the plot of the novel. The middle sections introduce a specific theme. I Am David discusses the idea of governmental control of thought and concentration camps. The Bluest Eye discusses racial identity and physical beauty. Mockingbird covers the history of the Civil Rights Movement and its effect on small-town Southern life, as well as the changing role of childhood. My ntonia addresses life on the prairie. At first glance, these volumes would seem geared toward middle schoolers because of their short length, highlighted vocabulary words, and graphics-heavy format. Their explanations of historical events sometimes border on simplistic; for example, the discussion of the Nazis in David is fairly simple. The books are generously illustrated, and include photos and maps. A time line juxtaposes historical events with the life of the author. While user-friendly, the books don't fit the age of those reading the novels. For example, most students would read The Bluest Eye in late high school, yet the format of Colson's book would appeal to eighth or ninth graders—much too young for the source material. On the other hand, older middle school students who read To Kill a Mockingbird will find this volume quite useful and appropriate for them. Students in the high interest/low reading level category might find the Cather and Morrison volumes helpful, but average students will not. None of the volumes stand alone as historical references; the authors consistently use portions of the source texts to illustrate various historical incidents. Librarians should assess which volumes might match their curriculum and purchase accordingly.—Elizabeth M. Reardon, McCallie School, Chattanooga, TN

[Page 156]. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.