ABC Hobby Store

The lady stood in the kitchen, moving swiftly as she cut the vegetables. Her apron swayed when she shifted her weight, and she made piles of the lettuce. The door opened and she turned around to see a boy standing in the corner. His small shadow appeared on the wall, and his eyes darted around [...]

A Strike for the Wind

What fun! I galloped down the slope, near the river. My best friend, Amarganth, the red colt, was already splashing in the cool water. I've known Amarganth since I was a newborn foal. Mother, Father, Amarganth, my sisters Mom and Embrea, and my cousin Exanthion all belong to the same herd of wild horses. The [...]

A Puzzling Story

Rachel loved puzzles. Jigsaw puzzles. Thousand-piece clear-blue-sky and flowery-meadow puzzles. Cute little puppy-dog-face puzzles. Any kind of puzzle suited her fancy. She loved the challenge of putting one together, piece by piece. Discovering the piece that fit was always thrilling and a small victory over the manufacturer who had labeled the puzzle "difficult." For her [...]

Teddy’s Eyes

Holly Gapen sighed and switched the elbow she was leaning on. She was stuck in deep thought. Algebra was so discouraging! "Holly?" Holly's ever-loving mother called. "Holly, it's dinner time. Lasagna, your favorite." Holly shuffled her papers, finally done, into her overstuffed binder and groggily stretched her lanky legs that brought her so much trouble. [...]

The Battle of Lake Trasimene

The first ray of sunlight crept up the Apennine mountain range in central Italy. Above the winding hills and jagged rocks, the bulk of the Carthaginian army was perched above Lake Trasimene, just below a higher cliff. Standing at the edge of the cliff, staring out toward Spain, stood a man. He was wearing a [...]


"This is crazy," Marie said for the fourth time. From her seat in front of the steering wheel of the family's old station wagon, Mom gave her a side glance and an encouraging smile. The dense woods that surrounded the road flashed by the windows in a green blur as the afternoon sun streamed through [...]


Lizy was my best friend the summer I turned six, though that summer I also learned she couldn't be forever. I found her resting in the cattails by my father's pond. Her shell was speckled with mud and pieces of wet grass stuck to her damp surface. My parents discovered me patting her softly with [...]


I was once a slave, but now I am a teacher. This is my story. The year is 1830, and I am twelve years old. I live on a plantation in South Carolina. I have no kin with me at this plantation. I was separated from my mother at age seven. She was sold to [...]

When the Soldiers Were Gone

When the Soldiers Were Gone by Vera W. Propp; G. P. Putnam's Sons: New York, 1999; $14.99 When I first saw the book When the Soldiers Were Gone by Vera W. Propp, it sounded boring. Then as I started reading it, it was sad and fun to read and soon I couldn't stop. Henk (the [...]


Unbroken by Jessie Haas; Greenwillow Books:  New York, 1999; $15 In Unbroken, Harriet Gibson becomes an orphan in 1910 when her mother dies in a horse-and-buggy accident. Now thirteen-year-old Harriet must leave her old life in a small Vermont town to live in the country with her Aunt Sarah. Having recently moved, I can understand [...]