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Truce: The Day the Soldiers Stopped Fighting

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  832 ratings  ·  215 reviews
Two-time Newbery Honor Book author Jim Murphy writes a stunning nonfiction masterpiece about a Christmas miracle on the Western Front during World War I.
On July 29th 1914, the world's peace was shattered as the artillery of the Austria-Hungary Empire began shelling the troops of the country to its south. What followed was like a row of falling dominoes as one European coun
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Hardcover, 128 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by Scholastic Press
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Jiwon Yang Yes. It was in the non-fiction section of my school library, but it has a fictional aura. I was wary at first, but then I read it and enjoyed it a lot…moreYes. It was in the non-fiction section of my school library, but it has a fictional aura. I was wary at first, but then I read it and enjoyed it a lot. (less)

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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  832 ratings  ·  215 reviews


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Melki
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ho-ho-ho, history, war
'Twas Christmas in the trenches, where the frost so bitter hung,
The frozen fields of France were still, no Christmas song was sung
Our families back in England were toasting us that day
Their brave and glorious lads so far away.
*

The Western Front, 1914

Here two parallel trenches --- one held by the Germans, the other by the French, English, and Belgians --- from fifty to one thousand yards apart stretched from the North Sea coast all the way to the Swiss border, a total of over 475 miles. In betwee
...more
Betsy
Nov 01, 2009 rated it it was amazing
If your history classes in school were anything like mine, then this is how a typical year would go: Lots of Revolutionary War, lots of Civil War, oh no it's almost the end of the year so let's just skip to WWII, and finally a brief smattering of Vietnam. WWI got the short end of the stick year after year after year when I was growing up. In fact, by the time I graduated from high school I associated only a couple vague images with it: mustard gas, red poppies, and All Quiet On The Western Front ...more
Julie Suzanne
Aug 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
While this book is in the Juvenile section of the library, I have to say it's the best book on WWI (or any war) that I've ever read. The causes and consequences of WWI are so much clearer to me; I could probably even carry on a lengthy discussion about it. I have read textbook chapters about WWI both in high school and college, and once I started this text, I felt like I didn't know a THING about it. So, I do recommend this to adults who love history but don't necessarily love reading adult nonf ...more
Josiah
Mar 11, 2010 rated it liked it
Truce isn't primarily a book about World War I. As is often the case in Jim Murphy's books, Truce explains the essential facts that led to the war, but then zeroes in on one unusual section of the war that was strikingly memorable, and makes it the focus of the book. In this case, the unusual occurrence is the almost unexplainably widespread truce between the British and German soldiers which took place in the battle zone of the Western Front on Christmas Eve and Day of 1914.

I knew a fair amou
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Erin
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Reading a nonfiction book when you’re already familiar with much of the content can sometimes grate. I found the manner in which Murphy presented the subject to be engaging and informative. Although there were some points where I felt facts were simplified in ways that left out an important nuance of the events, in general the author presents a balanced depiction of the pressures and prejudices working against Europe at the time. The facts are not dumbed down, but some are slightly simplified fo ...more
Richard
Nov 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a Non-Fiction book about the 1914 Christmas Truce in World War One. This book was wrote by Jim Murphy in 2009. There are many surprising and interesting facts that are in the book. Some are funny and some are sad but they are facts. The First World War is a great topic to read and learn about. The title of the book hints at what the book will mainly be about. The author gave great and clear details about specific things such as what they wore and what they did down the fronts. Here is a ...more
HunterP
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Alex  Baugh
Dec 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: world-war-i
Truce is a wonderful book that not only tells the story of the unofficial Christmas Truce of 1914 during World War I, but also gives a coherent, thorough history of the events leading up to the hostilities and just what those terrible first months of war was like in the trenches.

The fact is that most of us don't really remember World War I from our high school history days. And I know I never learned that World War I could have and almost was prevented. So I can honestly say that I (re)learned
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Joe Radtke
Nov 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Truce: The Day the Soldiers Stopped Fighting by Jim Murphy is a non-fiction book about the Christmas Truce of 1914 during World War One. Jim Murphy starts the book by writing about how the war started and showing how the whole conflict could've been avoided. The anger that lead to the war started when an Austrian-Hungarian Arch Duke Franz Ferdinand when assassinated by a Serbian National. Now this was especially bad because he was the heir to the throne and the Austrian-Hungarians already hated
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Rebecca
Jun 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I know, I'm too liberal with my 5-star ratings, but boy have I been reading some good stuff lately. This was unintentionally the perfect nonfiction follow-up to Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld. Westerfeld's book, though it was an alternate history, still taught me more about what set off World War I than I remember learning in school, and Murphy's book fleshes out the reality magnificently, with maps, photos, drawings, first-person quotes, a timeline, notes & sources, additional resources, and ind ...more
Missy
Oct 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
I've never known much about WWI. I liked this book - a children's book, so it was in layman's terms and easy to understand - but it gave a feel for the horrors of war without being graphic. I am going to share some quotes from the book that impacted me. I guess I should say *spoiler alert* in case I'm giving something away.

The story of the Christmas truce is one I was vaguely familiar with, but I didn't realize that the truce didn't end on Dec. 26. In some areas, it continued for months. In one
...more
Rebecca Leedham
Nov 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonficton
I have never been one to enjoy history books. Although this may have been mostly because of the texts that were presented to me in my K-12 days, it has stuck with me through the majority of college. Truce, however, was a history book that I finally found myself completely intrigued by. This book is the story of Christmas in World War One. Men on both sides were miserably fighting and circumstances were getting worse and worse. The war was gory and each side had leaders that wanted it to continue ...more
Kirsten
Nov 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: gr-8-semester-1
I've never done a review for nonfiction before, so apologies if this turns out really, really bad.
I never read much nonfiction, and this was hard for me to read. The first half was so boring, and I found it very hard to read because it was just spewing facts after facts, and there was nothing to grab attention (for me, at least). Then, when the Christmas Truce came, it really picked up, and I found myself sort of liking hearing about the soldier's lives and all.
If you wary about this book, jus
...more
Kirsten
Jun 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: gr-8-semester-1
I've never done a review for nonfiction before, so apologies if this turns out really, really bad.
I never read much nonfiction, and this was hard for me to read. The first half was so boring, and I found it very hard to read because it was just spewing facts after facts, and there was nothing to grab attention (for me, at least). Then, when the Christmas Truce came, it really picked up, and I found myself sort of liking hearing about the soldier's lives and all.
If you wary about this book, jus
...more
Moe
Usually, when I read non-fiction I don't do it willingly. This book was different. I never knew that the famous 1st World War had a good, touching, part to it. I think everyone should read this book, because I believe that peace is the answer instead of war. I also believe that everyone has a good part to them, just waiting to shine. This book taught not only about climax of the war, but also the little steps that built up to WW1. I might take up some more non-fiction after this great piece of l ...more
Debby
Mar 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An excellent book about the Christmas truce of 1914. Confirms my belief that most people want to live in peace if you can keep the leaders/governments out of it. Very well-written.
Jodi
We gained so much understanding from this book. Using many firsthand accounts derived from diary entries and other written sources, this book tells the story of the events leading up to the Great War and the miraculous Christmas truce of 1914.

How tragic, and how senseless, this loss of life and destruction of villages, landscapes, families, generations, and nations. How horrifying to be forced to fight an enemy you have learned is just like you--a human being, with thoughts and feelings and fami
...more
Barbara
It has been said that politics makes strange bedfellows, and sadly, war makes enemies out of individuals who might otherwise have found some commonalities had they met under different circumstances. It is no great secret that the men who enlist or are drafted during wartime often serve their countries out of a desire to defend their nation and its causes, but that sometimes it isn't clear just why they are fighting. So it was in WWI, the war that was supposed to end all others. The death toll in ...more
Marcos Perez
Truce: the day the soldiers stopped fighting is a chapter book that describes what led to the escalation and what eventually led to the conflict of World War I. It zeros in on one specific event that occurred around Christmas time of 1914. This book is written in the third person point of view which takes a bit of credibility away since it is not written by a person who actually experienced the events that are presented in the book. However, there are a few primary accounts scattered around the ...more
Amanda Ivany
Everyone has heard about WWI but, the story of when the fighting stopped shows a side of war often forgotten for those who have been distanced from it. Truce is set during WWI but the main story is set at the trenches bordering No Mans Land, Christmas of 1914. Truce has won: 2010 Notable Book for a Global Society, Editor’s Choice, ALA Notable Book for Children, ALA’s BBYA Best Book for Young Adults, NCTE Orbis Pictus Recommended Title, Junior Literary Guild Selection, Booklist Best Books of 2009 ...more
Abdullahi Abdi
Jun 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I rate this book 5/5 because it talks about how world war one started. And people who love history and wars should give this book. A try the book talks about how people died in the trenches and the struggles people went through during the war. And how they tired to survive in the trenches and getting shot at. And more about world war 1 I liked this Book because i'm a guy who loves history and big events that happened in the world.And I was really interested in this book because I wanted to know ...more
Denise
Nov 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Non-fiction children's book about the various truces during Christmas 2014, WWI. Murphy does a nice job setting up the reasons (or lack of them) for the war. The direct quotes from soldiers lend authenticity and immediacy to the story. If only the regular soldiers and not the commanders were in charge, the world might be a different place.

Quotes:
But most higher-ranking officers felt the business of war had to go on.

The peace was indeed a very fragile one.

Recommend for: non-fiction readers, peo
...more
Becki
Dec 17, 2019 rated it liked it
I have long been vaguely familiar with the truce on Christmas Day during the first year of World War I. Some Christmas songs mention it, and that's where my knowledge has come from, no doubt. In listening to an audiobook set during WWI, I came across the mention of the truce once again. This inspired me to seek out more information. Hence, reading this book.
I think the book gives a good understanding of both how the war begun as well as the truce. Appropriate for upper elementary students on up.
...more
Janet
So, I'm seriously geeking out on this whole 1914 Christmas Truce during WWI thing. This book was a really nice and concise history of that time with great pictures and illustrations.

I work at a college and I always tell my students that if they want great background information on a subject that they are researching or need to write a paper about, that the best place to start is with juvenile non-fiction. It gives you the simple facts and tells you all you need to know to get started. I only wi
...more
James Blevins
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Truce was one of the best books I have ever read. December 25, 1914, the western front of world war 1.
Death and chaos stretch all along the soldiers' trenches and into no man's land. But on this particular night, on this particular day, on this particular year, the soilders of the western front decided they didn't want to kill any one anymore for some poloticians. So they had a christmas truce and played games and ate food for months. This was a great book. A masterpiece.
Loralee
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-with-kids, ww1
I got this for Cameron to read and I think it was probably a little too detailed for him right now. He read it and said he liked it, but didn't have a lot to say about it. I think most of it maybe went over his head a little bit. I think I'll have him come back to it in a few years. Really, really good intro to WWI though. It really focuses on how the war began and each country's involvement in the war.
Jack
Dec 03, 2018 rated it liked it
I very much enjoyed Truce by Jim Murphy. Before I read this book I knew nothing about the great war(WW1). This book provides a great context of the Great War. During this book, I was able to read about different parts of the war through the authentic pictures, facts, and quotes. Compared to other nonfiction books this book kept me reading. Personally, I am very busy so I do not have the time to read. However, this book was very short so I was able to read this book despite my schedule. If you a ...more
Aubrey Hitt
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am obsessed with the illustrations in this book. It is beautiful and I think it captures the sweetness of the day amidst the darkness of the time. I love reading about the special day when troops from opposing sides decide to come together to celebrate. I know this would be great for elementary students to show kindness among such difficult and hard times.
Mateo
Nov 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: grade-8
Truce is a good book and I actually read it because I was doing a scrapbook on this topic and decided to read it for more info. Reading this book gave me a lot of info about it and I was able to make a better scrapbook because of it. I believe that if you are doing a project or just would like to know the topic better this could be a good book for you.
Dana Van Aert
Jul 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Extremely well put together. It breaks down world war I and explains how the "Christmas Truce" got its beginnings. This book will change your perspective of World War I and help you discover that we are all human; we may be a lot closer to our "enemies" than we think.
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An American author of more than 35 nonfiction and fiction books for children, young adults, and general audiences, including more than 30 about American history. He won the Margaret Edwards Award from the American Library Association in 2010 for his contribution in writing for teens. Jim lives in Maplewood, New Jersey, in a hundred-year-old house with his wife Alison Blank, a children’s TV produce ...more

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