Veron's family are Armenians living in western Turkey at the beginning of the 20th century. There was a long history of instability between the Armeni...moreVeron's family are Armenians living in western Turkey at the beginning of the 20th century. There was a long history of instability between the Armenians and the TurksThe Turkish government decided to get rid of the Armenian population mostly because of religious differences (the Armenians were Christian). Veron's family of well-off merchants are forced from their homes and sent on a long march south and east to the Syrian desert. Many die along the way or of disease when they reach the refugee camps. Veron survives and ultimately escapes and it able to return to her hometown and the grandmother that stayed behind. But that is just the beginning of her journey. The Greek government declares war on Turkey and begins attacking. Veron is injured and evacuated to a hospital farther west, and eventually ends up in a city on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. Her story is still not over, with war, struggle, death and reunions with family members taking its toll on her young life. And all before she was 15! This a biographical tale of Veron's life, written by her son.
The biggest plus of this story is that it got me interested in a part of world history that we don't hear anything about in the United States. It would a good book to introduce in a unit about the Holocaust to talk about the many other mass exterminations that have happened throughout world history.
The writing was a little dry in spots and it lacked a lot of emotion.(less)
Marion Anderson was one of the greatest singers of the mid-20th century. She traveled all over Europe, performing for heads of state and the aristocra...moreMarion Anderson was one of the greatest singers of the mid-20th century. She traveled all over Europe, performing for heads of state and the aristocracy. But in her home country of the United States, Marion Anderson had to fight for the right to perform in locations, as well to stay in hotels, travel on trains, even walk through certain parts of the train station. Marion Anderson was African American, which meant that she was not accepted in many parts of the United States. Her biggest challenge was against the Daughters of the American Revolution, who owned Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. They had a no black performers policy and that meant that Anderson could not perform in the largest concert hall in D.C., the only place fitting her talent. Thanks to support from some very influential supporters, including Eleanor Roosevelt, Anderson was able to perform in an open air concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. (less)
Decent biography for young adults about a woman who was willing to sacrifice her reputation to provide an education for black girls in the years befor...moreDecent biography for young adults about a woman who was willing to sacrifice her reputation to provide an education for black girls in the years before the Civil War.(less)