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War is hell, and not just for the soldiers who go off to fight it. In interviews with approximately 40 children, all of whom have at least one parent who is serving, or has served, in Iraq or Afghanistan, Ellis shows just how hard it is on the family members left behind. Ranging in age from 6 to 17, young people from Canada and the United States talk about the things that are on their minds. Worry about their parents' safety, pride in their service to their country, and confusion about why such service is necessary are all intermingled with the everyday concerns of friends, school, and "just getting on with life." Common themes run throughout; many of those interviewed mention how important it is to maintain a normal life and to find people they trust to talk to, and how hard it is when they are not around other families who are experiencing the same issues. Accessible and utterly readable, this book offers a glimpse into current home-front life, and is a primary source of what it means to have a family member serving in a war. While students may find some of the reading repetitive, the book is an excellent resource for opening discussions about the current events.-Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA
Posted May 23, 2011
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