The War at Home

Connie Jordan Green, Author Margaret K. McElderry Books $13.95 (136p) ISBN 978-0-689-50470-9
Green's first novel is set in Oak Ridge, Tenn., during World War II. The city's borders are guarded by soldiers, and Mattie's father is not allowed to discuss the nature of his job at the plant; in fact, he doesn't know himself what project he is involved in. Mattie, 13, accepts these circumstances, but she cannot swallow the fact that her 12-year-old cousin Virgil is coming to live with her family for a while. He boasts endlessly that boys are better than girls, he gets into trouble at school and he consistently earns the attention of Mattie's father. While it at first appears that the only way in which Mattie and Virgil relate is through bickering, a genuine friendship forms between them. When Virgil's mother dies, Mattie is compassionate and feels a void when he leaves Oak Ridge. Green develops their relationship with subtlety. Mattie and Virgil are entirely likable characters, and their experiences will engage readers from the outset. Ages 12-up. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1989
Release date: 04/01/1989
Genre: Children's
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