When Will This Cruel War Be Over?: The Diary of Emma Simpson, Gordonsville, Virginia, 1864 (Dear America Series)

When Will This Cruel War Be Over?: The Diary of Emma Simpson, Gordonsville, Virginia, 1864 (Dear America Series)

4.3 19
by Barry Denenberg
     
 

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Acclaimed author Barry Denenberg's WHEN WILL THIS CRUEL WAR BE OVER? is now back in print with a gorgeous new package!

The peaceful, traditional Southern life that Emma Simpson and her family know is shattered when the Civil War reaches their soil. Soon, Emma's father and brother are called to battle, but her family is confident the South will quickly win the

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Overview


Acclaimed author Barry Denenberg's WHEN WILL THIS CRUEL WAR BE OVER? is now back in print with a gorgeous new package!

The peaceful, traditional Southern life that Emma Simpson and her family know is shattered when the Civil War reaches their soil. Soon, Emma's father and brother are called to battle, but her family is confident the South will quickly win the War between the States.

As the months drag on, though, the harsh realities of war set in. Death and hardship are all around Emma, and food, medicine, firewood, and ink for her to write in her diary become increasingly scarce as troops from the North march deeper into the South. Finally, even her home is commandeered by the Yankees.

Still, with a brave spirit and the knowledge of what is most important, Emma never loses hope that the war will end.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

PRAISE FOR DEAR AMERICA:
"More than a supplement to classroom textbooks, this series is an imaginative, solid entre into American history." --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

"An impressive series that will challenge students to make connections from prominent historical events to relevant life situations . . . A wonderful asset to the classroom as well as to home libraries." --CHILDREN'S BOOK REVIEW SERVICE

"Engaging, accessible historical fiction." --SLJ

"The Dear America diaries represent the best of historical fiction for any age." --CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Children's Literature - Jennifer Lehmann
Fifteen-year-old Emma Simpson knows that her life can never be the same as it was. Her father has been away, fighting for the Confederate Army, for two years, and they just received word that her brother Cole is dead. News of the losses of family and friends comes frequently. Her Aunt Caroline comes to live with them when Uncle Benjamin dies and the situation in Richmond becomes too dangerous. She brings Emma's Cousin Rachel, who becomes increasingly difficult to tolerate, and Baby Elizabeth, who provides a ray of sunshine in the bleak wartime south. Emma reads to escape the tragedy that surrounds her and writes to Tally, a young man she met shortly before he became a soldier. With the support of the Negro slaves Iris and Amos, the women help each other through times of grief and the strain of Yankee occupation. The journal format is an appealing way to make history personal and authentic. Viewing the Civil War from the ordinary life of the South, particularly from a plantation with loyal slaves, provides a different perspective than the familiar pro-Yankee history. Readers may have trouble with the formality of the language in this "Dear America" series book, but Emma's feelings come through genuinely. The mention of works by Austen and Bronte create an extra layer of interest for the classroom, and the text includes additional background information and historical photos. Reviewer: Jennifer Lehmann

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780545275989
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
04/01/2011
Series:
Dear America Series
Pages:
176
Sales rank:
467,227
Product dimensions:
5.42(w) x 7.66(h) x 0.73(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author


Barry Denenberg is a critically acclaimed author of nonfiction and historical fiction. His historical fiction books include titles in the Dear America, My Name Is America, and Royal Diaries series, many of which have been named NCSS/CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People. His nonfiction books have covered a wide array of topics, from Anne Frank to Elvis Presley.

Barry Denenberg lives in Bedford, New York, with his wife and daughter.

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When Will This Cruel War Be Over?: The Diary of Emma Simpson, Gordonsville, Virginia, 1864 (Dear America Series) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
Samantha Himegarner More than 1 year ago
When her brother first comes home from the war and Emma sees his coffin, she wonders how dhe can write so camly. If were her I would wonder the same thing. While she lives througgh the Civil war,she has other things to worry about. For one her father goes out to war, and her cousin and aunt come to visit a lot. The only thing that helps her forget about everything. that is when she is reading with her mother. But when her mother gets a high fever,I knew everything was going to start going wrong right then and there. And it did. Emma's mother and baby Elizabeth both, sadly enough to say,they leave. This book I would highly recommend,but for a eighth grade reading level. I hope you like it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I LOVE this series!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have never read this but i think my 5 th grade teacher would recommend it. She reads the dear america books to us all the time.
rfltori More than 1 year ago
The Civil War Diary of Emma Simpson written by Barry Denenberg is a good story to learn about what happened in the war. Fifteen year old, Emma is a very kind girl who cares about her family. This book tells about a young woman who loves her family and friends, and also wants the war to end. Emma lived in Virginia, when the war started the Army took over her home. The reason for this book is tell about her life during the war. Emma wrote in a diary every day of the month for a year. I think this story was good and sometimes it was sad to see Emma's life change when some of her family died because of a sickness or in the battlefield.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Growing up on a Virginia plantation in the mid-1800s, slavery has been part of Emma Simpson's entire life. Now, she and her mother are working tirelessly to keep the place running in the absence of her father, who is somewhere to the south fighting the Yankees. Emma hears constant reports describing the ignorant Yankees and their disapproval of holding the black people against their will. The slaves she's known on her father's plantation seem happy enough. She watches the women gladly helping her mother in the garden and in the main house. Even the men who work in the fields and drive the wagons appear content, and she knows none of them have been mistreated like some she's heard about. Sporadic letters from Emma's father promise the South will win the war quickly, but as time passes more of their neighbors and friends are sending men off to fight. When Christmas of 1863 passes without a celebration, Emma realizes hopes of a short war might be wishful thinking. Aunt Caroline, Cousin Rachel, and Baby Elizabeth stay on into the New Year. Their company is welcome, especially when Emma's mother becomes ill. Emma's diary over the next year describes the rapid and devastating changes as the war drags on. Although their slaves remain loyal, keeping the plantation running becomes more and more difficult, especially as her mother's health deteriorates. Word arrives almost daily of local men and boys losing their lives on the battlefield as the Yankees come closer every day. Emma writes of her mother's death and sickness that threatens neighbors and friends. She describes enemy troops ransacking plantation homes, destroying prized possessions and taking food and livestock with no regard for the remaining women and children. Emma tries to remain hopeful despite the constant worry that her father and the young man she loves might not return alive. Author Barry Denenberg gives readers a view of the Civil War through the eyes of a young girl from the South. Whatever one believes about the intent and purpose behind this historical time, Denenberg shows the toll it took on the lives of those who struggled to hold on while the war raged around them.
Kim Mariano More than 1 year ago
Wow this book is amazing I highly recomend this book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is great but sad.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book, although I wasn't too fond of how the author ended it. It was pretty sad, but that is to be expected with a book about a war. I definitely reccomend this book AND this series.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I finished this book in one day! It was quick, but well written. The main character I found interesting and the voice in every page was refreshing! The story and plot was realistic and you got a real feeling of the Civil War.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book when I was in 6th grade and I never really knew exactly what the civil war was like. The thing I loved about this book is it gave you insight on how a young girl of that time felt and all the troubles. I really enjoyed this book I read it in 2 days.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was sort of depressing almost! I enjoyed learning about the men who fought for us and what really happened to people! I cryed when Emma's mother died, but the epilouge was very well written as well as the book and I really enjoyed it. :-) I wouldn't recommend this book for people who don't like to read deppresing and sad stories, but other than that I would definitely suggest that you read this book!!!! :-)
Guest More than 1 year ago
When Will This Cruel War Be Over shocked me while I was reading this fantastic and shocking book. You have no idea what it was like in the Civil War, and I didn't either, until I read it. A 14-year-old girl explains what the world was like during the war. Through her tragedies that she has to go through, you can visualize and see what exactly what it was really like and the feelings she had to go through. I recommend this book to 5-8th graders who like historical fiction and who enjoys reading a good book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is so wonderful to me. This girl is struggling with her family but she try's her best,that's the good part. If you ask me you should read this book. I could never lay it down! And plus,I love the Dear America books,so every one I read I love it no matter what.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I hated this book. It was too depressing and I just wanted to put it down. But I stuck with my it staying true to my wood "If I start a book I'll finish it". I did read it one day, but for the other reason, I hated it and wanted to finish it. This is not at all as good as the other Dear America books. First, this book was too depressing. Nothing good ever happened. I expect someone to be like that because of a war and all, but there has to be some optimism. Second, this book has no real story line. It does give one a since of what the Civil war must of been like. In a Picture of Freedom you got both the since of what it must have been like as a slave and it also had a plot. This book had no plot except about an anoying girl who writes in her diary about the war. This brings me to my third point. Emma says that she doesn't want to be like a person who cares about her looks and is selfish. But she is. Many times she writes what about what she wore or how she stiled her hair and so on. I personally think that is selfish. She was always sad, depressed, and only thought about her own troubles. But these are only my opinions. If you want to read fine, but I'm not the one recomending it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this book alot because it tells you about a girl who is in love and is struggling to keep her family together. You should really read this book. I read this book in one day because I just couldn't put the book down. It was amazing. If you are the type of person who likes to read books alot and is looking for a good this is it. P.S. Alot of people die in this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well it started off not so good and I thought I wouldn't like it but the authors of the 'Dear America' Series proved me wrong again. It get really good towards the middle. Actually so many people dies that the lady Emma new I had to start making a list. I think I like the Epilogue the best.