Discussion Forums - Homeschoolers' Corner Homeschoolers' Corner

Topic: Know any good WW1 fiction?

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Know any good WW1 fiction?
Date Posted: 2/5/2008 3:47 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

My 15 year old daughter is studying WW1 and is looking for some good historical fiction set in that time period.  She read No Hero for the Kaiser and enjoyed it.  She is about to read Hidden Rainbow.  I am pretty careful about what she reads.  Do you know of any good books?

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 4:17 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
Posts: 1,640
Back To Top

Have you looked at beautiful feet book selections?  www.bfbooks.com, they might have something.

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 6:46 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

Beautiful feet is the curriculum she is doing. 

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 8:49 PM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2008
Posts: 695
Back To Top

After the Dancing Days is a book she might enjoy. It's about a girl who befriends a man who is badly wounded in WWI. I don't remember the details but it was very moving.  I'm sure there are reviews about it on Amazon or maybe even on here, (I'm very new to this sight).

Hope your study goes well.


Date Posted: 2/5/2008 10:57 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 422
Back To Top

Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on Western Front is set in WWI, but you would need to read it aloud and edit as you go. It gives great insight to trench warfare but does have some parts that I didn't read to my children.\

Other suggestions might be:

Rilla of Ingleside (1920), novel by L.M. Montgomery, an account of the war as experienced by Canadian women of the time.

Sergeant York and the Great War by Tom Skeyhill

The Lost Battalion: A Private's Story by John Nell

To the Last Man by Jeff Shaara

Christmas Truce:The Western Front December 1914 by Malcolm Brown

She could also read biographies of notable characters such as Lawrence of Arabia,  and Baron von Richthofen (the Red Baron)

Some good websites we used:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/worldwarone/ Great children's website

http://rutlandhs.k12.vt.us/jpeterso/uboatcar.htm study of political cartoons of the time

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 9:54 AM ET
Member Since: 2/14/2006
Posts: 88
Back To Top


Here is a link to Free study Guides from Glencoe.   http://www.glencoe.com/sec/literature/litlibrary/

They have one for  All's Quiet on the Western Front. 

I did this as I read this book recently and I really felt like it helped me enjoy and understand the book more.  

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 9:59 AM ET
Member Since: 1/7/2006
Posts: 523
Back To Top

There is an oold movie about Sargeant  York with Andy Grifffith. I remember watching it as a child but Ireally can't tell you more about it.

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 12:45 PM ET
Member Since: 2/10/2006
Posts: 1,665
Back To Top

There is a Dear America Diaries for World War I

Diary of Simone Spencer


Date Posted: 2/6/2008 3:22 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

Thank you.  She has read a few of those already, but I will check out the rest.  After some research, we decided that All Quiet on the Western Front is not a book I want her to read, due to some of the content.

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 5:45 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 422
Back To Top

Yes, Megan. It is an intense book. The content is why I edited on the fly while I read aloud.  When my children were younger, I edited some parts of the Bible as we read as it contained issues they were not ready for. I think you should be able to find another book that discusses trench warfare. This was an important aspect of WW I.  I had a student tell me that he had an elderly relative that served in the trenches and would never discuss his service with his family. After the student learned about trench warfare, he understood why. (I taught in a co-op)

I also recommend a nonfiction book by Albert Marrin. "The Yanks are Coming".  You would probably need to buy this as it rarely comes through PBS.  I don't recall anything objectionable, and my son enjoyed it and refuses to part with it. It describes WW I from the American perspective. I learn as much as my children. WW II was really WW I -Part B.  I admit it, I love history.

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 9:17 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

She is currently in the middle of The Yanks are Coming.  It is recommended by Beautiful Feet.  She is also greatly enjoying it.  Albert Marrin's books are wonderful.

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 10:44 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 422
Back To Top

Yes, I collect them whenever I find them. I also have "Hitler" and "Stalin", which are also very good. Stalin made a lasting impression on my son, the man was truly evil. I love Marrin's writing style, very engaging. So anyone with Albert Marrin books, you can go ahead and post them, Megan and I would love them!

Another idea for a great read is Ernest Shackleton's disasterous expedition to the South Pole which  took place during the WW I era. He was a great leader, very honorable. The story is quite amazing. Try "Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage" by Alfred Lansing. The incident happened 1914-1915.

Date Posted: 2/7/2008 2:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

She will be reading both Hitler and Stalin later in the study.  I wish someone would post some of Marrin's books.  They are difficult to find.  Fortunately, our library has a few.

She has read Shackleton's Stowaway and found his voyage a fascinating story.  Is the book you suggested fiction or non-fiction?

Date Posted: 2/8/2008 9:03 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 422
Back To Top

I will be teaching "Endurance" next year and have several books on Shackleton that I read a prep work. (I teach in a co-op)

"Endurance" by Albert Lansing - nonfiction, well researched  telling of the failed expedition.young adult reading level

"South" by Ernest Shackleton-The man himself wrote a book. It is a little harder to get through than the above, with 400+pages, but I like hearing from the man himself. He was a very humble man.

"Shackleton's Forgotten Men" by Lennard Bickel - There was an expedition from the other side of the Antartic continent that was to lay supply depots along Shackleton's route. They did not fare as well and did not know Shackleton was unable to start his journey. Very tragic, but worth the read.

"Mrs. Chippy's Last Expedition" by Caroline Alexander -a fictional account of the ship's cat. A little sad if you have read other accounts and know what happened to all the animals aboard.

"Sackleton's Way: Leadership Lessons from the Great Antartic Explorer" by Margot Morrell and Stephanie Capparell -I haven't read this yet, but even from the above books, you get a sense of the man S. was. He was a wonderful leader. This book has a forward by Shackleton's granddaughter and then goes through several characteristics of good leadership and how Shackleton used and embodied them.

In our literature class this year, we read a NF account in which the leader had poor leadership skills and the expedition suffered greatly. I hope to use this next year to illustrate a good leader.

patticom - ,
Date Posted: 2/8/2008 9:32 AM ET
Member Since: 11/3/2007
Posts: 416
Back To Top

Bluestocking Press has a terrifc book "World War 1--the rest of the story and how it affects you today" that is from a completely different point of view (economist and libertarian) than approximately 99% of the world war material out there.  If you can pick up a copy, I'd strongly recommend it, along with the sequel (same title but World War 2), along with a field trip to Le Memorial museum in Caen, France, if you can manage it.  ;)


edited to say I missed the Fiction part until after I typed this, sorry!!  :-p  I don't know of any good books covering that period, but the "Young Indiana Jones" series from TV is set then, if that helps at all!

Last Edited on: 2/8/08 9:36 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/8/2008 12:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
Back To Top

I will definitely have to check out some more books on Shackleton.  I didn't realize there were so many.

Non-fiction is fine, fiction is just what I was looking for at the moment.  I knew about the one from Bluestocking Press, I just forgot about it.  I'll have to look into getting a copy of that.  Hmmm...

Unfortunately, I don't think we'll be taking a field trip to France anytime soon. :(

Subject: WWI books
Date Posted: 2/19/2008 8:55 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2007
Posts: 1
Back To Top

SOTW recommends "Over the Waves," by Marianne Olson (Rafter Five Press, 1999).  Tells of 12-year-old Joel as he gets caught in Sweden at the beginning of World War I. (3rd-6th grade) 150p.

Amazon will offer a more detailed review. 

SOTW also recommeded these books:

All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque (Ballantine, 1982).  In this classic, Paul Baumer and his friends enlist in the German army. (6th- 8th) 296 pp.

The Singing Tree, by Kate Seredy (Puffin, 1990).  Two young cousins, Jancsi and Kate, must grow up quickly and learn to care for the farm when Father is called to fight in the Great War. (4th-7th) 256 pp.

Hope this helps.


Barbara in NH