Kate Hastings's Reviews > Shooting the Moon

Shooting the Moon by Frances O'Roark Dowell
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's review
Jan 15, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: historicalfictionj
Recommended for: Grades 4-6 historical fiction vietnam photography
Read in January, 2009

A gentlER Vietnam story the way Number the Stars is for the Holocaust.

When army-brat Jamie's brother enlists for Vietnam, she figures her father, a colonel, will be happy. She sure is-- she can't wait to hear about someone who actually gets to fight for the country on the front lines!!

Working on base in the rec center, she gets to know soldiers who have bad memories from their tours and/or have lost siblings who fought there. She learns that maybe war isn't all glory all the time.

Her brother sends home nicey-nicey letters to Jamie's family, and rolls of film for her to develop on her own. At first the pictures are just of hooches and his army buddies, and one picture of the moon. Later, photos of injured soldiers and unhappy people make appearances. As his photos change, so does Jamie.

So... nothing really graphic in this book. But it doesn't paint a romantic picture, either. An not a negative message-- just a realistic one. Seems very relevant to this generation as we fight another unpopular war.

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