It’s Veteran’s Day, an opportunity to remember and honor the members of our country’s military. November 11 is more than just a day off from school, it is a time to remember that others have served, fought, and sacrificed so that we can continue to live as we choose. Originally established to commemorate the Armistice established November 11, 1918 ending the hostilities in WWI, in 1954 the holiday was changed to honor veterans of all conflicts. Check out these books that bring personal perspective to the military experience of World War I.
The Poppy Lady: Moina Belle Michael and Her Tribute to Veteransby Barbara Walsh is the true story of one woman’s quest to honor the soldiers in World War I. Inspired by John McCrae’s poem “In Flanders Fields” Moina Michael turned the poppy into an enduring symbol of appreciation and remembrance for the American military. (PB)
Knit Your Bit: A World War I Story by Deborah Hopkinson is the story of a little boy who wants to help when his father goes off to fight in WWI. He realizes that doing something small can make a big difference. Inspired by the true life event of the Central Park Knit-In in 1918. (PB)
Bunny the Brave War Horse: Based on a True Storyby Elizabeth MacLeod is a heartwarming tale of two brothers and their horse who tackle the horrors of World War I together. (ER – 1-3)
Shooting at the Stars by John Hendrix details the Christmas Eve Truce of 1914, when British and German soldiers came together on the battlefield to celebrate the holiday together, only to return to their trenches and await orders to resume fighting. Includes non-fiction support information about the truce. (MR- 4/5)
In Flanders Fields: The Story of the Poem by John McCrae by Linda Granfield follows the lines of the historic poem interspersing factual information about all aspects of the military experience in World War I. (MR – 4/5)
After the Dancing Days by Margaret Rostkowski tells the story of Annie, a young girl who is trying to forget World War I. That’s what her mother wants her to do, but Annie can’t seem to forget Andrew, the young injured soldier at the hospital where her father works. As Annie gets to know Andrew better she begins to understand that the War isn’t so easy to forget and growing up isn’t so simple. (MR -6+)
All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque is a defining classic of the cost of war to the young men engaged to participate in conflict. Paul Baumer enlisted with his friends, but as the war goes on and he lives the horrors of World War I, he vows to work against the principles of hatred that have destroyed his life. (YA+)