From award-winning author Jewell Parker Rhodes comes a powerful novel set fifteen years after the 9/11 attacks.
When her fifth-grade teacher hints that a series of lessons about home and community will culminate with one big answer about two tall towers once visible outside their classroom window, Dèja can't help but feel confused. She sets off on a journey of discovery, with new friends Ben and Sabeen by her side. But just as she gets closer to answering big questions about who she is, what America means, and how communities can grow (and heal), she uncovers new questions, too. Like, why does Pop get so angry when she brings up anything about the towers?
Award-winning author Jewell Parker Rhodes tells a powerful story about young people who weren't alive to witness this defining moment in history, but begin to realize how much it colors their every day.
|Publisher:||Little, Brown Books for Young Readers|
|Product dimensions:||5.20(w) x 7.40(h) x 0.80(d)|
|Age Range:||8 - 12 Years|
About the Author
Jewell Parker Rhodes is an award-winning writer and acclaimed educator and speaker. She is the author of Ninth Ward, a Coretta Scott King honor book, Sugar, winner of the Jane Adams Peace Association book award, and Bayou Magic. She has also written many award-winning books for adults
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Really great book i liked how the main idea was great
When I first heard about this book I was mostly interested in it because to me, September 11, 2001 doesn't seem like history. I was in seventh grade and able to watch the live reportings as they happened. I never even thought about children who were not alive when it happened and what they might have to learn about it. This book takes a closer look at all of that. As a future librarian, I can definitely see myself recommending this to teacher and students alike. Deja and her two friends, Ben and Sabeen, have gotten a strange series of assignments from their teacher. It talks about home and then goes on to talk about Americans in general and so on. When Deja is forced to ask her family questions, it brings up events that her father doesn't want to talk about. Together Deja, Ben, and Sabeen complete the project and find out more about themselves and America. September 11th is a touchy subject. It's something that not many people have had the courage to write about, so I'm very glad that Rhodes did. (Especially with the 15th anniversary coming up, this event deserved to be talked about.) And to do it in the manner she did makes this story even better. She went over the "lessons" that they should have covered first instead of attacking it head on. It helps that she gave a bit of an introduction before going into the meat of the subject. This will mostly help the students who may not have any idea that this happened. Also, as someone that is not the biggest fan of historical fiction, I really enjoyed this book. Maybe because I don't consider it history so much because I lived through it, but still I really enjoyed it. I tried reading it as someone Deja's age who probably knew nothing about the situation before it came up in their lessons. By trying to read it from this point of view I still felt like I was learning alongside them, This shows me that this book would make a perfect companion to anything about 9/11 being taught in public schools. This book is ideal for teachers and librarians looking to give a little more insight on the subject of 9/11. Having lived through it (even only through television) this was a hard subject to read about. Even fifteen years after the fact, I still remember exactly what I was doing, where I was, and how scared I felt. Although history wasn't my favorite subject, it's always interesting to say you lived through it and watch others learn about it.
I hadn't ever really thought of how to explain it to children who were not alive during that time. Jewel lParker Rhodes tackles this tough subject in a wonderful way in her new middle grade novel, Towers Falling. The characters in this story are learning about 9/11 in their 5th grade class in Brooklyn, but their also dealing with their own issues. Ben's parents are getting divorced, and he's just moved to NYC with his mother from their ranch in Arizona. He knows about 9/11 because his father enlisted after it happened. Sabeen is Muslim, so she is very aware of the discrimination and hatred her people face as a result of the 9/11 attacks. But Deja, a young African American girl, is living in a homeless shelter. Her father has horrible headaches and panic attacks, but she doesn't know why. And she knows nothing about 9/11. This is a story about friendship, about discovery, and about the history of America - including one of the most recent, horrific events. It's about that time during a child's life when they're finally old enough to handle the truth and about the adults who struggle with letting them learn it. I absolutely loved this book! Writing about September 11th in this almost third hand way - reading about other kids dealing with it - was a genius way to approach these truths. Jewell wrote this book in the hopes that it would be taught in schools, and I can only hope that it will be part of the curriculum by the time my son is in 5th or 6th grade. http://www.momsradius.com/2016/07/book-review-towers-falling-mg.html