Category: History

Freedom Summer is out

Have you ever heard of Freedom Summer? Maybe your history book says something about how, in 1964, dozens of young people went south to Mississippi to help Black citizens register to vote. That summer brought a wealth of new experiences for both the young people–mostly white college kids–and the Mississippians they met and lived with. Some experiences were terrifying. Violence stalked the state, and multiple murders took place. But others were inspiring. The heroism, courage, and dignity of people who simply wanted to exercise their right to vote still inspires us today.


Journalist Bruce Watson wrote Freedom Summer to tell the story of this important chapter in the Civil Rights movement. His book reveals the behind-the-scenes maneuvers of everyone from a racist local sheriff to the President of the United States when confronted by people who demanded their rights . . . and didn’t back down. It also tells the stories of some of the young volunteers, describing that season of hope and fear in their own words. I am proud to have been chosen to adapt Freedom Summer into this version for young readers, published this month by Seven Stories Press.

Lies, truth, and history

I’m proud to have been chosen to write the Young Readers version of a great book: Lies My Teacher Told Me, by James W. Loewen. It’s about U.S. history–and the parts of it that our textbooks leave out, or get wrong. If you’ve ever wondered whether you’re learning the full story about Christopher Columbus, or the Pilgrims, or the Vietnam War, or much, much more, I hope you’ll check this book out. Many students have shared it with their history teachers and changed the way history is taught in their schools.


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