Teen Volunteers 2017: Best Historical Fiction

  • The Good Earth

    1931 by Pearl S Buck

    "The early 1900s in China was a time leading up to the communist revolution. The social status and life experiences in general of the people depended on how much money one had. Pearl S. Buck uses the best possible technique writing the narration of this book; the thoughts portrayed in there are actually those of the main character, Wang Lung. This is a classic that comes highly recommended for the great history and the great writing style."—Elliott, 15

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  • Elijah of Buxton

    2007 by Christopher Paul Curtis

    "Slavery was still largely practiced in the States, which is why Elijah's family had run away to a community of others like them. In a book that masterfully portrays a people who were lucky enough to escape, the plot is especially realistic because it must have been what happened to so many 1700's people. This book is—like a good historical fiction book should be—a great picture of history that has wonderfully interesting, distinct characters."—Elliott, 15

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  • Paperboy

    2013 by Vince Vawter

    "As a winner of the Newberry Honor, this book has an incredibly interesting plot that focuses on the characters first, while slipping in historical references along the way. This was the Civil Rights era (in the 1950s in Memphis, TN). Meet so-called "Little Man," who is an enchanting character who has a stutter, making it hard for him to communicate. He is the center of a stellar plot that's a journey of self discovery for the young protagonist."—Elliott, 15

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  • The Crucible : Text and Criticism

    1996 by Arthur Miller

    "The Crucible is a play about the Salem Witch Trials. It's full of mystery, drama, romance, and peril. A must-read for anyone who likes history."—Abigael, 15

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  • Out of the Dust

    1997 by Karen Hesse

    "This book, written in poetry, tells the story of a girl living in the Dust Bowl. It's a story of heartbreak, hope, and survival."—Abigael, 15

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  • Johnny Tremain

    1971 by Esther Forbes

    "This story, set in Boston just before the Revolutionary War, is great for anyone who loves history and action. The main character is relatable and you'll find yourself pulling for him."—Abigael, 15

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  • The Apothecary

    2011 by Maile Meloy

    "This is all about magic and some history too. It is about how everyone can be saved with just a little bit of perseverance and adjustment. This book is a part of a trilogy that leads you through fabulous adventures."—Anusha, 12

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