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Grenade

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4.19  ·  Rating details ·  3,567 ratings  ·  623 reviews
Here it is! The hugely anticipated follow-up to Gratz's NYT bestselling, critically acclaimed phenomenon REFUGEE. This is another searing and heart-pounding look at kids making their way through war.
It's 1945, and the world is in the grip of war.

Hideki lives with his family on the island of Okinawa, near Japan. When WWII crashes onto his shores, Hideki is drafted into the
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Audio CD
Published November 27th 2018 by Scholastic Audio Books (first published October 9th 2018)
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Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.19  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,567 ratings  ·  623 reviews


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Kiera
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, that was epic.

Grenade is a young adult historical fiction novel that takes place in Japan during world war II. It follows Ray who is a US Marine and Hideki who was forced to become a soldier. They're on different sides of the battle but what happens when they cross paths. The choices that they make might be he difference between life and death.

I read Refugee, another one of Alan Gratz's books last year and absolutely loved it. Grenade was just as enjoyable as Refugee.

Grenade was jarringly
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Carolyn
This wasnt as good as Gratzs other titles. It was hard to connect with either protagonist and a lot of the culture was over my head. Good story though, and Im sure very interesting for middle school children, but I definitely didnt feel as passionate about this one as I did with Refugee. ...more
Shaye Miller
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grenade is a heart-racing historical fiction novel centered on the island of Okinawa during World War II. It is written from alternating perspectives: (1) Fourteen year old Hideki is  from the island of Okinawa. He is part of the Blood and Iron Student Corps that is fighting with Japan. He was handed two grenades as he heads off across the island in hopes of stopping the Americans. (2) Ray is a fairly young (we know hes at least 18) American Marine who just landed at Okinawa. Hes heading across ...more
Josiah
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Alan Gratz wrote on a variety of topics early in his career as a junior novelist, but wartime historical fiction is where his reputation was forged. Prisoner B-3087, Code of Honor, Projekt 1065, and Refugee all preceded Grenade, so that by the time this novel of World War II Japan arrived, a generation of young readers was eager to visit the past again with Alan Gratz. The story begins April 1, 1945 on Okinawa, a Japanese island the Allied armies must conquer before progressing to the mainland. ...more
Genevieve
Dec 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is a great book, I read it for my outside reading in social studies and really enjoyed it! It's a great fast read and paced book. I read it right after I finished Harry Potter so it made it appear much smaller and easier to read.
K.
Trigger warnings: war, death, death of a family member, racism, indoctrination, racial slurs, explosions, gun violence, blood.

I read Alan Gratz's Refugee last year and it absolutely blew me away. I was hoping this one would be just as incredible. I didn't love it QUITE as much, but I was still hooked from start to finish. It's great to see a story set during WWII that deals with the Pacific theatre of war because overwhelmingly, novels set during WWII deal with the European theatre.

I knew very
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Laura Gardner
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grateful to @scholasticinc for this free book!
🌟
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⭐⭐⭐⭐💫/5 for this moving novel by #AlanGratz.
As with all of Gratzs historical novels, I was on the edge of my seat for the entire book, I was deeply connected to the characters and I learned about history! The Battle of Okinawa, one of the final battles of WWII before the atomic bomb dropped on Japan, is not anything I have ever studied in depth. It was heart-wrenching to learn how Okinawans were treated as pawns in a larger war. There is nothing
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Snazzy Reads
Jun 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4
Heather Johnson
Jan 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had high expectations for this book after having thoroughly enjoyed Alan Gratz's "Refugee." This book did not disappoint; however, because the book is about an incredibly violent battle of WWII, there were graphic scenes that served to help readers to understand the terror that occurred on the tiny island of Okinawa.

Readers first meet Hideki at his school as his island is being bombed at 2am by American troops. Hideki and his Okinawan classmates are being graduated and sent to war, as the
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Jace
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kris Morahan
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gratz once again proves himself to be the master of middle grade historical fiction.
Ms. Yingling
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus



Hideki is about to graduate from his school when the American ships appear outside of Okinawa. He and his classmates are each given two hand grenades, and told to kill as many Americans as they can with the first one and kill themselves with the second. Hideki has already been separated from his family, who have been evacuated to mainland Japan. He sets off across the island and is not quite sure what to do, other than to try to survive. At the say time, Ray, an American
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Nick Tewell
Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one of my favorite books I have read in a long time. The plot was action packed from start to end. Though predictable, the ending is quite fitting. I look forward to reading more books from this author.
Lynn
A good novel about WWII on Okinawa Japan. A young man who is a member of a youth military corps is trying to survive with friends and family a battle for Okinawa between the Americans and Japan. The island residents are technically Japanese but historically been Okinawan and speak another language. The Japanese soldiers are under severe stress and willing to kill the residents at the drop of a hat. They have warned them the Americans are devils who will poison them with tainted food and water if ...more
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Grenade by Alan Gratz, 288 pages. Scholastic, October 2018. $17.

Language: PG (8 swears, 0 f); Mature Content: G; Violence: PG-13 (many deaths)

BUYING ADVISORY: MS, HS - ESSENTIAL

AUDIENCE APPEAL: HIGH

Hideki and his family live a poor but loving life on Okinawa in 1945. The Japanese army has taken control, making life more difficult, but Hidekis mother and little brother were evacuated. Ray is a young American eager to help in the fight against Hitler, but instead finds himself on a small Japanese
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Melanie Dulaney
Alan Gratz, writer of phenomenal historical fiction, has done it again with Grenade. And like Refugee, this one is appropriate for middle grade students as well as the YA crowd. Told from the perspective of a fresh-faced Marine and a 14 year old Okinawan conscripted to serve in the Imperial Japanese Army, readers gain insight into the fears and triumphs of both young men as well as learn much about the invasion of Okinawa by both the Americans and the Japanese. Ray and Hideki demonstrate bravery ...more
Sean Jenkins
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Being brave doesn't mean not being scared. It means overcoming your fear to do what you have to do.
Alan Gratz, Grenade

Alan Gratz's Grenade is an amazing book. It's about a young Okinawan boy named Hideki who is drafted to the Blood and Iron Student Corps and is sent on the battle field with only two grenades. Another young adult who is in the book is Ray who is a American marine. They both have to survive the battle field with ambushes, traps, and more. My favorite part is where Hideki brings
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Kirsten
By alternating between the voice of Ray, a young American Marine, and Hideki, a 14 year old Okinawan school boy, Gratz tells both sides of a brutal WW II story. With paradoxically lyrical language, Alan Gratz presents the senseless violence and horror of war with stark and straightforward candor.
Nicole
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The mark of truly great historical fiction lies in being able to educate readers about massively important events from human history while creating characters you feel so deeply for that your heart races for them and the tears flow. As usual, Alan Gratz does not disappoint!
Beth Honeycutt
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a little unhappy with Mr. Gratz because I kept waiting for something to happen (which I won't divulge) and it didn't. What a sad but interesting portrayal of the Battle of Okinawa.
Barbara
I'd give this one a 3.5. It took me quite a long time to get into it, but I continue to be impressed with Alan Gratz's willingness to tackle topics and parts of history that others have not. Perhaps part of the problem for me was that I didn't feel as though I knew the two protagonists very well before they were thrust into life-threatening situations. Since the narrative moves back and forth between the two, Hideki Kaneshiro, a young Okinawan boy who has been conscripted into the Imperial ...more
Ellen Deckinga
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I wasn't prepared for this book. I was expecting a more surface level read about the war. Again Alan Gratz beautifully scripts his words and layers in meaning so that as you think about it you understand more. He did an incredible job pulling in how the culture and the environment of Okinawa impacted the fighting. He also made me more aware of a people's who just got caught in the crossfire. It is a more mature read, but so worth it.
Dawn
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great Gratz book!
Alex  Baugh
It's April 1, 1945 and for 13-year-old Hideki Kaneshiro, the war has become very real when his Okinawan school is bombed by offshore American battleships. Hideki and the other students of the Blood and Iron Student Corp are immediately given two grenades, one with which to kill as many Americans as possible and one with which to kill themselves, and sent on their way to fight.

On an American ship heading to Okinawa as part of a large invasion force of GIs and Marines, is Private Ray Majors, just
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Julie Suzanne
Action-packed coming of age story showing the humanity of soldiers on both sides. I think that my middle school students will enjoy this, but it was just okay for me. Even though the plot was full of near-death experiences and serious battle peril, my pulse never quickened and I never cried, which again, is near impossible to accomplish. I think my students will appreciate that Gratz isn't afraid to kill off his characters, and I think they'll learn interesting facts about this battle on Okinawa ...more
Lorie Barber
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alan Gratz has done it again. Like Refugee, this book is historical fiction, told in part from alternate perspectives (an Okinawan boy-soldier and an American soldier, not much older.) In addition to it being a riveting tale about the not-often-focused-on Battle of Okinawa (fantastic authors note has great details) Grenade is also about what happens to people during times of bloodshed.

This middle-grade/YA novel is an incredible demonstration of character motivation and change. Hidekis desire to
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Katy Wineke
I have mixed feelings about this book.
On one hand, I think this is the best of all of the books by Gratz that I have read. However, I dislike the excessive use of the word "J*p" throughout the book. While I understand his choice in using it for historical accuracy, it doesn't sit well with me. At the end of the book, Gratz does include an author's note that explains that the word is offensive and should not be used, but I wish it had been included in the note at the beginning that stated the
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Kate Hastings
Nov 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grades 6-9. Kids fascinated with war stories? Here is a non-glorified REAL look at war. Ray, an American soldier is part of the Battle of Okinawa. He has never killed a man and is suddenly surrounded by death and must kill or be killed. Hideki is an Okinawan-- NOT Japanese. He is almost 14 and is forced to stay with his father and older sister while his mother and brother are evacuated. Soon he is given 2 grenades-- one to kill Americans with and the other to destroy himself. The Japanese aren't ...more
Jackie
Oct 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grenade by Alan Gratz will be sure to find fans in YA. This book is historical fiction and takes readers to Okinawa in April, 1945. We have two characters, both young men, to follow. Ray is an American soldier who is still very green and sensitive to the atrocities of war. Hideki is an Okinawan young man who is just made part of a Japanese resistance group; he is trying to shake the spirit of cowardice he believes he's inherited from his ancestors. Both young men are given grenades to help ...more
Katie Reilley
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received an ARC of this book from Scholastic at the Chicago Reading Summit.

Gratz has written another fast paced, multiple perspective historical fiction novel for MG/YA readers. The story takes place on the island of Okinawa as the main characters (a young American soldier and an Okinawan boy soldier) each try to carry out their leaders orders while surviving the horrific sciences that surround them.

This book is intense. The battles and description of the tactics used by both sides are
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Alan Gratz was born and raised in Knoxville, TN, home of the 1982 World's Fair. After a carefree but humid childhood, Alan attended the University of Tennessee, where he earned a College Scholars degree with a specialization in creative writing, and later, a Master's degree in English education.
In addition to writing plays, magazine articles, and a few episodes of A&E's City Confidential, Alan
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