Karen Ball's Reviews > Riot

Riot by Walter Dean Myers
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Jun 05, 11

really liked it
Read in November, 2009

This would be amazing as reader's theater! This is the story of the New York City draft riots of 1863, when President Lincoln signed the first order for the drafting of soldiers into the Union army during the Civil War. Poor Irish immigrants in the city protested -- violently, because to avoid the draft, you had to pay $300, which at that time was what most of them made for an entire year. Claire is 15, and works in the hotel where her parents (a black man and a white Irishwoman) both work. The hotel is located in lower Manhattan, where the first drawing of names for the draft takes place on July 11 -- and the riots and fires and looting start. Black people around the city are beaten and murdered, and New York is a dangerous place for many days... until the Union Army is recalled to assist the police in restoring order. There are many characters and many sides to the issue within the story: policemen, soldiers, looters, rich, poor, teens and adults. Excellent for historical debates, with reproduced photos, letters and other primary source items from Walter Dean Myers' own collection. Especially good for 8th grade.

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Riot.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.