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Just Like Martin

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Overview

It is August 28, 1968, the day of the Freedom March on Washington, D.C. Everyone in town is going---except Isaac Stone. His father, a bitter Korean War veteran, forbids it. "Nonviolence is the same as cowardice," he says. But Stone has heard Martin Luther King, Jr., preach, and he wants to follow in his footsteps. He is sure he will change his father's mind---until their church is bombed and two of his classmates are killed. Can Stone conquer his own anger and live up to his ...
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Overview

It is August 28, 1968, the day of the Freedom March on Washington, D.C. Everyone in town is going---except Isaac Stone. His father, a bitter Korean War veteran, forbids it. "Nonviolence is the same as cowardice," he says. But Stone has heard Martin Luther King, Jr., preach, and he wants to follow in his footsteps. He is sure he will change his father's mind---until their church is bombed and two of his classmates are killed. Can Stone conquer his own anger and live up to his dream?

Following the deaths of two classmates in a bomb explosion at his Alabama church, fourteen-year-old Stone organizes a children's march for civil rights in the autumn of 1963.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Fourteen-year-old Ike Stone and his pals are thrilled to be part of the Civil Rights movement sweeping the deep South in the 1960s, but the depth of racial hatred is brought painfully home when two of their friends are killed in a bombing. The peaceful demonstration that the boy and his friends mount in response to this senseless violence forms the climax of this stirring novel. Equally moving is the subplot dealing with how Ike and his troubled father take halting steps towards making peace with each other. Noted theater figure Davis has loaded enough action and emotional energy for two novels into his tale. Even though his characterizations (particularly of the adults) sometimes blur, the book's drive and vision more than compensate. A passionate first novel. Ages 10-14. (Oct.)
School Library Journal
Gr 7-9-- The year is 1963, and 14-year-old Isaac ``Stone'' Stone's father, Ike, won't let him travel with the rest of his church youth group from Alabama to the civil rights march in Washington. His mother has just died, and his father worries that something will happen to the boy. Besides, ever since Ike came back from the Korean War filled with bitterness, he has kept a gun in the garage. He opposes his son's devotion to nonviolence and belittles his admiration of Martin Luther King. When the church youth meeting room is bombed, killing two friends and maiming a third, Stone organizes a children's march. Ultimately, these efforts and the assassination of President Kennedy force Ike to confront his feelings and support his son. Both Stone and Ike are well-drawn characters, and their relationship is developed convincingly. Stone's devotion to his cause will inspire readers from all backgrounds. Davis realistically portrays the boy's struggle to apply King's values in his personal life, and the ending is hopeful but not happy. Unfortunately, inconsistencies in language and dialogue interrupt the flow of the story, as do the characters' tendencies to make speeches. Historical information is not always integrated smoothly. This is a moving story, but one that does not quite come together as a novel. --Lyn Miller-Lachmann, Siena College Library, Loudonville, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140370959
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 1/1/1995
  • Pages: 224
  • Age range: 10 - 13 Years
  • Lexile: 820L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.40 (w) x 7.18 (h) x 0.52 (d)

Meet the Author

Ossie Davis appeared in numerous Broadway and Hollywood productions, including I'm Not Rappaport, The Defenders, The Stand, Jungle Fever, Evening Shade, and The Client. He was also the author of several plays, teleplays, and children's books. He passed away in February 2005, still active in his work at the age of eighty-seven.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(2)

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 23, 2011

    Worst Book ever

    Yeah I get what the author was trying to get through to us that racism is bad and its still around us but the book itself with Stone's problems were boring. I like a book to have actiong 24/7 and this was not that book. Did learn a lot but just was another book I'd never wished to read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2006

    very truthful

    This book shows the truth of what went on during the cival rights movie. If you think there is violence today, you should read this awesome book. But is is a little deppressing

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2006

    Why does racism exist?

    This book was a great book i've ever read that shows me how racism hurts.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2002

    GREAT

    I am a white male and i always thought that the whites back then were EVIL because the way they treated african americans. This book tought me the knowledge on how african americans felt about this stupidy UNBeLIVABLE BOOK

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2001

    A Great Book

    The book was outstanding. It had a great point-of-view and I couldn't put it down. I don't like reading history books that often, however this book was something every child should read. I will keep the book in my bookcase forever.

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