About My Book Reviews

Friday, February 19, 2021

War Stories by Gordon Korman

Title: War Stories

Author: Gordon Korman

Published: 2020

Genre: Contemporary

Grade Level: 3rd-5th Grade


Blurb (from goodreads):

There are two things Trevor loves more than anything else: playing war-based video games and his great-grandfather Jacob, who is a true-blue, bona fide war hero. At the height of the war, Jacob helped liberate a small French village, and was given a hero's welcome upon his return to America.

Now it's decades later, and Jacob wants to retrace the steps he took during the war -- from training to invasion to the village he is said to have saved. Trevor thinks this is the coolest idea ever. But as they get to the village, Trevor discovers there's more to the story than what he's heard his whole life, causing him to wonder about his great-grandfather's heroism, the truth about the battle he fought, and importance of genuine valor.

My Scores:

Writing Style: Solid

I don’t typically read books with war jargon too often, so there were several terms I was unfamiliar with. I was fine with that because what book lover doesn’t enjoy being introduced to something new? Plus, since it was middle-grade, these terms were introduced in such a way that was fun and simplistic.


Characters: Absolutely Amazing

I loved the characters in this novel because they were so representational of several generations. The war hero from WWII, the grandson, and the great-grandson each added to the conversation about the necessity of war, the evils of war, and the honor of the soldiers in battle.

Without giving too much away, I also appreciated the perspectives of the antagonists because they offered a completely different view of the evils of war.


Plot: So Many Plot Twists!

As expected in a Korman novel, the plot was extremely well paced, full of suspense, and kept me turning pages as fast as I possibly could.

Even though the novel was PG rated, it did not shy away from the realities of war or the complex feelings that soldiers are left with once the battle is over.


Overall: Totally Obsessed

I am totally obsessed with this novel! The plot was so well-crafted and engaging that I reached the end before I was emotionally ready for it to be over.

I loved how is gives a balanced view of war from the perspectives of different generations and from different allied forces. And I found the messages presented in the novel to be well-balanced and heart-felt.


Goodreads Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (even though it’s not on goodreads)

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