Monday, May 2, 2011

Day of Glory the Guns at Lexington and Concord

I thought about reviewing Day of Glory: The Guns at Lexington and Concordtoo late to request the book from the library in time to reread and write a review in time for Patriot's Day. It did remind me to put a request into our local library for the book.

The book was originally published in 1955 and picked up as a Scholastic Book selection in the 1970's. At some point Scholastic printed the book again in the 1990's under their Apple Paperback brand. I have not been able to locate a date because the library copy I borrowed still lists the original 1955 copyright date.

The story is a historical fiction account of the Battle of Lexington and Concord. The book is formatted in hour chapters beginning at 7PM the night before the battle and ending at 7PM the day of the battle. The book is historical fiction because it attempts to provide more emotional and personal details and create a story line to guide the readers through the events. This is what makes this novel a great book to accompany what can be dry historical accounts of the battle itself. Students can and should be asked to verify information for accuracy.

What I liked about this book is that it does not only focus on Lexington and Concord and the generic Minutemen who fought. It discusses the towns and locations where the volunteers came from to fight. While I was aware of many of these stories, I think it is important for students to hear them. Not all the Minutemen arrived at Lexington. It took time for the news of the Regulars arrival to get to these towns, the men to assemble, and then travel to the areas. This book does a good job explaining how the residents learned of the British troop movements and the journeys required to make it to the battle locations. It also explains the British plans and movements that are rarely addressed in most children's historical accounts of the battle.

This book is not currently in print, but it is commonly available in used books sites and as I demonstrated your public library. As with all resources, I suggest reading it yourself before using it with your children. This story would make a good read aloud in conjunction with other non-fiction historical accounts.

If you can find the original book, the cover art is better. The original cover depicts an artistic view of the Minutemen walking. The Apple cover is of children and is less focused on the content of the novel. The cover is hardly essential to the content of the writing.

Additional Links:

Acton Minutemen

Danvers Alarm List

Menotomy Minutemen

Minuteman National Park

Sudbury Minutemen



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