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Private Peaceful

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  9,258 ratings  ·  718 reviews
Longer novels from Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo are always a particular treat, and Private Peaceful is no exception. Tragic, surprising and engaging in equal measures, Morpurgo's novel charts both the childhood of young Thomas Peaceful in the early years of the 20th century, and his eventual underage enlistment in the British army to help fight the First World War....more
Paperback, 185 pages
Published August 2nd 2004 by HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks (first published January 1st 2003)
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*Rayne - The HeartBreaker*
The sadest book I have ever read.
I would reccommend this to you all who like to cry over a book, but I warn you to have a tissue when your near the end, because you'll cry your heart out.
This book is passionate and brings you deep, letting you know how the characthers feeling and wishing it could change to a happy ending, but it also tells you what war and true love and brotherly friendship is about.
It tells you how Charlie and Tommo Peaceful come to at the end, and I wish I have never read this...more
Words can't even describe how much this book means to me.

I would recommend it to anyone, especially to other history 'nerds' like me. As it is the type of book that lives on even after you turn the last page. No matter how many times I've read it, it never seems to lose my interest. It is a very popular book used in schools, but I think people of all ages can relate and feel connected in some way to this story and the characters within it, not just children.

After reading I can't help but think...more
A bookclub read which I really enjoyed. Set against the backdrop of World War One, the story follows brothers Charlie and Tommo as they grow up and enlist in Britain's army to fight in the war. Each chapter begins sometime during a long night as Tommo recalls all the adventures and trials he and his family endured together. This book is aimed at 10-14 year olds however adults seem to really enjoy it and it is a great discussion book.
Apr 28, 2009 Kate added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Im 13, and we read this book in my english class. Before I read this I never understood WW1 and WW2 but it opened my eyes to the suffering and sadness of it all. I think the author was brilliant to not go straight to the trenches, but go through Tommo's whole life first. I became to love Tommo alot as he grew up, and Charlie too. When they go to war it is just so miserable and sad and I now think all soldiers in the war, and ww2 were complete heroes and dont get enough credit for what they did f...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
A British teenage boy follows his brother into the army during World War I and is sent to the trenches in France. Describes how men who broke under the stress of war were shot as deserters. Pair this with Marcus Sedgwick's The Foreshadowing for a grim picture of the realities of war.
I first read "Private Peaceful" when I was about ten years old and I remember that it had a great impression on me. I borrowed it from the school library without particularly high expectations. I had read some of Morpurgo's work before and although I had enjoyed it I recall thinking that this book looked decidely dull. However, when I began to read the story I found it to be both historically interesting and fantastically gripping. It was the first book that really made me cry which just goes to...more
CoryHoneyBadger SlapAAshliTribeVickers
Thomas Peaceful’s life has not been easy. His father died in a logging accident while saving his life. Thomas's family endures much hardship at the hands of his father's former employer and a great-aunt. Thomas also has to protect his mentally challenged oldest brother, Big Joe. Through the trials and tribulations of his young life, Thomas has his older brother and best friend Charlie by his side.The First World War is at hand when they age up and become madely in love with a girl named Molly.Th...more
Michele Velthuizen
Interest level: 5th +
Reading level: easy, short book
Genre: historical fiction, World War I, WWI, soldiers
Read alikes: War Horse, Kensuke's Kingdom

Michael Morpurgo is one of my favorite authors, and this book is, in my opinion, one of his best. Incredibly, "Private Peaceful" is Michael Morpurgo's 100th book.

"Private Peaceful"is a short and easy read but, boy, the story will stay with you for a long, long time. It takes place during WWI when many young men were eager to take part in the war. Some...more
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Jillian Zick
Thomas Peaceful is a boy in Great Britain, a country both touched and tainted by World War One. As the early days of peace and security pass by Thomas and his brothers, the war looms ever closer to their (mostly) sleepy village. One day the tenuous thread from which Thomas's life hangs from snaps abruptly. He and his brother Charlie are sent away to war on the whims of the wealthy man who rules the town. As they battle the trials and tribulations of the war zone together, they become bonded in a...more
Gabriella Olson
Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo is an interesting book set in England during World War I. This book begins with Thomas Peaceful commonly referred to as Tommo who is naïve and child like, but grows as a person throughout the story as he begins to understand war and loss. Charlie is Tommo’s older brother who protects Tommo and has a daring personality. Together the two brothers rely and defend each other for their family and form a connection which cannot be severed even after death. As they...more
Thomas (Tommo) Peaceful has always lived within the footsteps of his older brother, Charlie Peaceful. The two brothers do everything together, and whenever something happens to Tommo, Charlie is always right there to protect him. But the one thing Charlie can't protect him from is the guilt he feels for his father's death, which was an accident when a tree fell on him; but he can try to help him through it. On his first day on school, Thomas meets his soon to be, love of his life, Molly. Coincid...more
Aidan Joly
Tommo Peaceful is living a normal life when his older brother Charlie is called to fight in the war. With this, Tommo has a tough decision to make. Will he go to war with his brother? In school, Tommo meets a girl named Molly. The boys start to grow close to her and she and Charlie start dating and she and Charlie soon begin dating and we later learn that Molly is pregnant with Charlie’s baby. Tommo and Charlie go to fight in the war and they stick up for each other on the battlefield and are v...more
Hans Fulton

When World War One breaks out and Thomas, also called Tommo, Peaceful's older brother Charlie is called off to fight, what should he do? Some might say stay at home, while others might say go off and fight with your brother. Tommo chooses to go off and fight. Charlie's knack for making officers hate him and the unforgiving battlefield make for some interesting times. Charlie is positive, outgoing, and not afraid to stand up for his ideas and views. Tommo is almost the complete opposite at the be

Private peaceful is a classic story about love, war and death. The main character is Thomas, also called Tommo. Tommo Lives with his older brothers Charlie, Big Joe, and mother. This story takes place during World War I. When Tommo starts school he meets a girl named Molly who is very nice and helpful. She cares very much for Tommo, and looks out for him at school. Soon after school starts Molly starts to come home with Charlie and Tommo. Every day they run down by the creek and swim in the wate...more
Joey Gyarmathy
Set in Britain in the early 1900s a young boy named Thomas Peaceful, nicknamed Tommo, is faced with incredible hardship. Tommo lives on an estate of a bitterly mean Colonel with his brother Charlie, who often seems to be a hero in the face of figures who threaten Tommo, and their peers,Big Joe, their older brother, who suffers from a mental disability,and their mother who takes good care of all the boys in their mischievous excursions.When Tommo first started school he was faced with difficulty...more
I think private peaceful is a wonderful book about loyalty and love between two brothers. I would recommend this book for those who love periodic dramas. This was a great book because it shows the strong bond between two brothers who have each others back, even through the hard times. Blood is thicker than water. After you get to know the characters you quickly fall in love with them, rooting for them. There was a low point in the book where their relationship was tested when a woman came betwee...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Private Peaceful is an exciting book. There is love and war nicely tied together. The chapters would end, but you wouldn't want to stop reading. Private Peaceful was a book that was interesting to read. there was great storyline that went along with true facts that were strewn all through the book. Private Peaceful was a mix of heart-breaking tragedy and happiness, right with it. There were joyous moments, and sad times, but that made the book so much better. The book really shows how much Tom...more
Austin St.
The story is about a young teenager named Tomas "Tommo" Peaceful. He tells us about the experiences he had living in his home village during World War I. His oldest brother, Big Joe, has learning disabilities and is often times looked out by his younger brothers. Thomas had another brother named Charlie, whom he spent a lot of his time with prior to the war. Before the war, he tells us about the pretty girl named Molly, a wonderful girl he met on the first day of school. Tommo knew from the mome...more
Leora Cohen-Tigör
Leora Cohen-Tigör
Period 5

The stage is set on the harrowing battlefield. A young man, Private Peaceful, as he is known, is counting down the hours until his untimely death. As the minutes tick by, he watches his life flash in front of his own eyes. He sees how unsure of himself he was as a little child; his ultimate loneliness as his brother leaves him to go off to school. When his brother joins the “Bigguns” in the upper school, he is left stranded with the “Tiddlers”, the lower school...more
Alexa Benware

Private peaceful is a book that gives each word a new meaning, something that gives the reader a new perspective on a family living through difficult times. What you thought you knew about life during war, alters. Private Peaceful tells of one's journey through life through the eyes of two brothers, Thomas, referred to as Tommo, and his older brother Charlie- the bold-minded boy who is not afraid to speak his mind to anyone about anything. As these two grow up with war in the backs of their mind...more
Kennedy Jameson
If any novel be permitted five stars, it is Private Peaceful. The story takes place during World War I. Tommo Peaceful and his older brother, Charlie, have been enlisted and go off to fight. Tragic experiences leave Tommo to come to terms with everything. Tommo and Charlie are compelled to compose vigorous decisions while fighting the war. Love and hatred play a key role in this novel. Molly, a childhood friend, falls in love with Charlie as Charlie falls in love with her, too. But what will hap...more
Dylan King
Thomas Peaceful has a life filled with guilt he feels despite having a happy life. Ever since his father saved him from a falling tree he has felt guilt for the loss of his father. Nonetheless, Thomas or Tommo spends time in his childhood with his brother and best friend Charlie, and his friend Molly. As well as with his mother and Big Joe his brother. Throughout his childhood of horrors (with Grandma Wolf living with them and the guilt of his father), and happiness he lives this same life. Wit...more
Kathryn Grabowski

Priavate Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo, is rich in history and leaves the reader pondering the next sequence of events. In World War One the Peaceful's are struggling to keep a house on the Colonel's property with the recent death of their father. A strong possible option is war.

Morpurgo develops both the main character, Thomas, also known as Tommo, and sub characters like real people. The characters are engaging with their human strengths and weaknesses. The characters are developed directly; mo

Derek Bruce
Charlie, an eighteen year old boy was living a good life, is struck in the face of war, specifically World War I, and is forced to go. The real question is should his younger brother, Tommo, go with him. Tommo and Charlie lived a happy life in England, in a simple little town where no big problems really occur. With the brink of war at hand however, the army is recruiting any boy of age to fight, which Charlie was. Tommo, however, was not. Tommo is sixteen years old at the time, and the military...more
Kelly R
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Luke Galbraith

Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo.

Private Peaceful, a touching story about love, friendship, family, war and injustice. Private Peaceful is a story that shows the power of words. It’s a story that shows the power of promises. Private Peaceful is a children’s story that reaches the heart and plays with it like a toy car.

Thomas Peaceful is reliving and retelling his life. He is telling it as of the point where something terrible is happening in his life. Thomas’s best friend and brother, Charl...more
Michael Morpurgo gently draws the reader into Private Peaceful, but the characters never relinquish their hold even after the last word has been read and the book closed.

Private Peaceful is recommended for a young adult audience which usually indicates the novel is most appropriate for a ninth through twelfth grade audience. There is a teenaged character who becomes pregnant out of wedlock and minimal profanity. The book illustrates the inhumanity of World War I. I would not hesitate to recomme...more
• Igor Kovalyov
• APA citation: Morpurgo, M. (2003). Private Peaceful. London: Collins.
• Genre: Historical Fiction
• Awards (If applicable): N/A
• Format: Print
• Selection Process: Recommendation
• Review:
Private Peaceful is a wonderful read for any age. Targeted to pre-teens this story takes place during World War I and is told by Thomas. Thomas is the younger brother to Charlie. We are treated to this story through a series of Thomas' memories of growing up with their older brother Big Joe and par...more
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Michael Morpurgo is the author of many books for children, five of which have been made into films. He also writes his own screenplays and libretti for opera. Born in St Albans, Hertfordshire, in 1943, he was evacuated to Cumberland during the last years of the war, then returned to London, moving later to Essex. After a brief and unsuccessful spell in the army, he took up teaching and started to...more
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“Being his real brother I could feel I live in his shadows, but I never have and I do not now. I live in his glow.” 51 likes
“We're much alike, bee, you and me," I said. "You may carry your pack underneath you and your rifle may stick out of your bottom. But you and me, bee, are much alike.” 21 likes
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