Playing War

( 2 )

Overview

One hot summer day Luke and his friends decide to play their favorite game of war, using sticks for guns and pine cones for bombs and grenades. Sameer, who hasn't lived in their neighborhood for very long, hesitates to join in. When he tells Luke and Jen and Jeff and Danny that he has been in a real war, they don't believe him.

"No way! You haven't told us anything about that! A real war? Did they let kids be soldiers? Did you have an M-16?"

Then, as Sameer explains what ...

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Overview

One hot summer day Luke and his friends decide to play their favorite game of war, using sticks for guns and pine cones for bombs and grenades. Sameer, who hasn't lived in their neighborhood for very long, hesitates to join in. When he tells Luke and Jen and Jeff and Danny that he has been in a real war, they don't believe him.

"No way! You haven't told us anything about that! A real war? Did they let kids be soldiers? Did you have an M-16?"

Then, as Sameer explains what happened to his family, the other children start to see their game in a new light.

While Playing War is a book about understanding what war can be like for families, and that it's not a game, it's also a sensitive story about the power of friendship and how children can learn from one another.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 2-5-It's too hot for basketball, so Luke and his friends decide to play war. As the sides separate to prepare for battle, newcomer Sameer is reluctant to play and leaves the game. The following day, he explains that he was in a real war before he moved to the United States. His house was blown up and his family was killed. The children, saddened by his story, go back to basketball. Beckwith's mission-to show children that war is bad and hurts people-overpowers the story. The strength here is Lyon's watercolor illustrations in summer greens, golden yellows, and coppery browns that evoke the heat of warm days spent with friends. A supplemental purchase.-Rebecca Sheridan, Easttown Library & Information Center, Berwyn, PA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780884482673
  • Publisher: Tilbury House Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/28/2005
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 8 - 11 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 28, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club.com

    When I was young, I often played war in the back yard with my cousins. We made forts out of cardboard and collected hard, pea-sized berries from the Chinaball tree in our yard. Each side pelted the other until our supply of berries ran out. Then we called a truce, collected the ammunition that had fallen between forts, and started again.<BR/><BR/>I was reminded of my old pastime when I read Playing War, written by Kathy Beckwith and illustrated by Lea Lyon. It's summer and the children in the book are bored with playing basketball, lobbing water balloons and riding bikes. They decide to play war and divide into soldiers and enemies, then collect pine cones and sticks to use for ammunition.<BR/><BR/>But their game changes when one of the friends, Sameer, talks about the real war that kids find in his homeland, and how it affects their lives. Playing War is a picture book intended for elementary school readers. It exposes young readers to current events in an age-appropriate way, and it provides an entrée to talk about some of the issues going in many parts of the world where children are enlisted as soldiers, or their families are affected by fighting. Playing War is a good read-aloud book appropriate for younger girls in mother-daughter book clubs.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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