Christina's Reviews > Riot

Riot by Walter Dean Myers
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's review
Apr 20, 10

bookshelves: audiobooks, historical-fiction
Read in March, 2010

Interesting time period to cover in a YA novel--the riots in 1863 when the Union Army drafted men in a lottery, including many poor Irish immigrants who couldn't afford to pay their way out of it (getting a substitute like rich "swells" did). The Irish also resented the blacks in the New York City Five Points slum area, for (they felt) taking away jobs that the Irish would have gotten. This erupted in three days of looting and shooting (Army boys fired on crowds). This story is told in script form, like a play, and that lent itself really well to audio. I enjoyed hearing the full cast give voice to the various characters with Irish accents and so forth. But it's a very short story. The main character is half-black, half-Irish, so she's caught in the middle when her Irish friends and black friends are at odds against each other. And a lot of it was just mob mentality coming out.

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