Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars: A Civil War Story

Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars: A Civil War Story

by Nancy Johnson


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During the turbulent years of the Civil War, three young people struggle to follow their dreams as the war devastates their homeland and their way of life in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

Hannah Yeager works hard on her family's farm and teaches young children in a nearby school. She and her parents remain loyal to the Union. Secretly her fourteen-year-old heart thrills to romantic literature. She dreams that someday she will find a true love. When she does, he is a handsome Confederate colonel.

The strong female character of Hannah will appeal to girls who often see the Civil War as all about the boys. Hannah is empowered by "The Crazy Man" who lives in nearby caves. She learns from him that she can do what she must do.

Hannah's thirteen-year-old brother, Willy, is spirited and headstrong. He rebels against his family's values and seeks adventure by joining an outlaw raider band, terrorizing the Union Army.

Charlie Richison is a cadet at the Virginia Military Institute. He dreams of bringing honor to the Confederacy, to his family, and to himself. He joins other VMI cadets to fight against the Union Army in the Battle of New Market.

Shenandoah, Daughter of the Stars, presents the beauty of the valley and the devastation brought by the war. It shows the effect of the Reconstruction years which follow the war. It presents real people, General George Armstrong Custer, General "Stonewall" Jackson, General John Breckinridge and shows their effect on the lives of valley residents.

Shenandoah examines the perennial dilemmas presented by war.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780989435642
Publisher: eFrog Press
Publication date: 05/13/2014
Pages: 146
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.31(d)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

Maybe because I was born in Hollywood, California, I have always loved the dramatic. With no television as a child, I found drama in books, reading by flashlight under the covers when I was supposed to be asleep.

One night when I was ten, my mother wrapped herself in her grandma Mattie's shawl--the same shawl I am wearing in my picture on this page. She sat down with her memory box--black with gold hearts and flowers painted on it. From the box, she drew out a packet of letters tied up in faded ribbon. Unfolding the pages, she began to read letters written by my great, great uncles--two teenage brothers from Rochester, New York, who joined the Union Army in 1862. As she read, my father told me about the battles and the armies and the reason for the war.

After graduating from Stanford, I worked, married, and raised three children. While my husband, Bob, was in the Air Force, we traveled to Civil War sites near Northern Virginia--Fredericksburg, Appomattox, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and the Shenandoah Valley.

I have taught 4th, 5th, and 6th grades in Encinitas, California, where I live, and worked for Kamehameha Schools in Hawaii as a language consultant.

Now that I am retired, I enjoy spending time with my four grandchildren. And writing.

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Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars: A Civil War Story 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Brenda Casto for Readers' Favorite Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars by Nancy Johnson took me back to the days of the Civil War when fourteen-year-old Hannah Yeager, her thirteen-year-old brother Willy and their friend Charlie Richison find themselves growing up all too quickly because of the war raging around them. Hannah is content with life on the family farm, but Willy longs to be a part of the action and runs off to join a band of raiders, while Charlie finds himself in the midst of a struggle when the Virginia Military Institute is drawn into a skirmish in the Battle of New Market. When the fighting comes to the Yeager farm, Hannah's life will never be the same.  Nancy Johnson creates very believable characters with Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars. Her writing easily evoked real emotion, allowing me to understand the urgency that Willy felt in wanting to join the fighting, but I could also understand his parents' perspective as well. Each character lends a unique voice to the story, providing different perspectives that really add dimension to the plot. I loved the strength of Hannah, and the character of Crazy was one that I could really believe might have lived during that time. Ms. Johnson's writing paints a vivid portrait of the tumultuous times that went on during the war. That, along with the mention of many very real people, lent a sense of realism to the story, making me feel like I was getting a bit of a history lesson as the story unfolded. The great attention to detail, coupled with very realistic characters and more than a few surprising twists, made for a page turning read, one that left me wanting to know more about Hannah and Willy. This story will appeal to young and old alike, especially fans of Civil War fiction. While this book is the third in a series it can easily be read as a stand alone. I really had no idea that it was part of a series until I finished it. A great Civil War fiction tale that allows readers to step into the lives of three unique characters!