Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Purple Heart

Purple Heart
Author: Particia McCormick
Publisher: New York : Balzer + Bray, c2009.

Plot Description:
            Matt Duffey just woke up in a hospital.  Days before he had been in a firefight with insurgents in Sadr City, but he can’t remember the chain of events that led him to wake up in a hospital bed.  As he struggles to remember what happened, and align them with what his unit says happen, he begins to realize that the line between right and wrong is blurred almost beyond recognition in wartime.

             Purple Heart presents one soldier struggling to reconcile his duties as a soldier with what is morally right.  It is a realistic look at the heartwrenching decisions soldiers make in the heat of the moment and how one boy is copes with the aftermath of those choices.  It is about brotherhood in battle and the camaraderie that develops.  Matt Duffey is an 18 year old recruit who had no idea what he was getting into when he signed up to be a soldier.  One might be tempted to say a book about a soldier in wartime Iraq might not be suitable for tweens, but this book is more that suitable.  It is a well developed book about a topic that is very interesting to a lot of tweens, especially older ones of any who know someone in the military.

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Reading level: 9th Grade

Similar Books: Woods Runner

Reader’s Advisory:
Personal thoughts- A really good book about the realities of war
Subjects/themes- War, Iraq, Hospitals, Injury, Amnesia, Fiction, Soldiers
Character names/descriptions-
            Matt Duffey- 18 year old soldier with temporary amnesia
            Justin- a member of his unit who was in the firefight with him
            Ali- a young Iraqi boy who befriended Matt on patrol
Annotation: What good is a Purple Heart if you don’t think you deserve it?

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