cover image The Morning Glory War

The Morning Glory War

Judy Glassman. Dutton Books, $13.95 (16pp) ISBN 978-0-525-44637-8

This vibrant, accomplished first novel sets its vastly engaging narrator in WW II-era Brooklyn. Jeannie Newman is placed in the ``smart'' class in fifth grade, there joining the dreaded Susanne Saks (Jeannie's mom makes her wear galoshes, ``ugly black rubber things with snaps''; Susanne is, ``of course, wearing brand new white boots. And I just knew that underneath there wouldn't be one bit of white polish on the brown part of her saddle shoes.''). Her troubles multiply when her teacher, Mrs. ``Gory'' Corey, takes an instant dislike to her. During the year Jeannie learns to cope with Mrs. Corey and begins a correspondence with an overseas GI as part of a school project, treasuring his romantic V-mail letters. Then Susanne lets one of these fall into Mrs. Corey's clutches, Jeannie is forbidden to write further and her ``war'' with Susanne begins. Jeannie's adventures, believable and saturated with period details, will rouse even the reluctant reader. Ages 10-up. (Nov.)