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Ann Rinaldi

Information about Ann Rinaldi and her historical fiction novels.

Caroline McCoy

on 29 April 2010

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Transcript of Ann Rinaldi

Ann Rinaldi •Term Paper (1980)
•Promises Are For Keeping (1982)
•But In the Fall I'm Leaving (1985)
•Time Enough For Drums (1986)
•Good Side of My Heart, the (1987)
•Last Silk Dress, the (1988)
•Wolf By the Ears (1991)
•Ride Into Morning, a (1991)
•Break With Charity, a (1992)
•In My Father's House (1993)
•Fifth of March, the (1993)
•Finishing Becca (1994)
•Stitch in Time, a (1994)
•Secret of Sarah Revere, the (1995)
•Broken Days (1995)
•Hang a Thousand Trees with Ribbons (1996)
•Keep Smiling Through (1996)
•Blue Door, the (1996)
•Second Bend in the River, the (1997)
•Acquaintance with Darkness, an (1997)
•Cast Two Shadows (1998)
•Mine Eyes Have Seen (1998)
•My Heart is on the Ground: The Diary of Nannie Little Rose, a Sioux Girl, Carlisle Indian School, Pennsylvania, 1880 (1999)
•Coffin Quilt, the (1999)
•Amelia's War (1999)
•Journal of Jasper Jonathan Pierce, the: A Pilgrim Boy, Plymouth, 1620 (2000)
•Staircase, the (2000)
•Education of Mary, the (2000)
•Girl in Blue (2001)
•Numbering All the Bones (2002)
•Millicent's Gift (2002)
•Taking Liberty (2002)
•Or Give Me Death (2003)
•Sarah's Ground (2004)
•Mutiny's Daughter (2004)
•Brooklyn Rose (2005)
•Nine Days a Queen (2005)
•The Color of Fire (2005)
•An Unlikely Friendship: A Novel of Mary Todd Lincoln and Elizabeth Keckley (2007)
•Come Juneteenth (2007)
•Juliet's Moon (2008)
•The Letter Writer (2008)
•The Redheaded Princess (2008)
•My Vicksburg (2009)
•Leigh-Anne's Civil War (2009)

Over 40 YA Novels Author Info Born in New York in 1934, Ann always enjoyed writing
Not allowed to attend college
Pursed interest in writing via the newspaper business
Experience as a reporter and as a mother inspired her fiction
Published her first short story, Term Paper, in 1979
Her first novel, Time Enough for Drums, was denied by 10 publishers who thought kids wouldn’t enjoy reading about history
Time Enough for Drums later became an ALA Best Book, as have several others
Credits her son Ron’s participation in Civil War reenactments with her interest in American history, and later with writing historical fiction
written over 40 historical fiction novels

Novels contain mix of historical jargon, events, heroes, cultural artifacts, and YA fiction characteristics: identity issues, rapid narrative, character growth
Clear devotion to research
stories are Mostly seamless, at times overwrought with historical detail
Main characters primarily fictional, female protagonists

Credited with turning young women onto history
“If I can 'turn them on' to our country's past, and seize their imaginations as Ron's (her son's) was seized, then I may succeed in doing something really worthwhile."
Keeps a professional profile
Maintains one basic website
style bibliography references Author website: http://www.annrinaldi.net/
Scholastic biography: http://www2.scholastic.com/browse/contributor.jsp?id=1753
All Book Jackets: http://www.annrinaldi.net/

The McCoy Hatfield family feud holds a legendary, but stigmatized place in Civil War history. In addition to the misconceptions surrounding the origin of the feud (stolen pigs, clandestine affairs, mysterious murders), the backwards, incestuous stain branded upon Appalachian natives in general hardly serves to humanize those genuinely affected by the violence of the late 1800s. Through her novel, The Coffin Quilt, historical fiction writer Ann Rinaldi shines a more perceptive light on the famed saga through her discerning protagonist Fanny, the youngest McCoy at Blackberry Fork.
Though the story certainly portrays the families as honest, hardworking people, Rinaldi's main character seems to be, in the end, the only sage person on either side of Tug Valley. As she struggles to understand her family following her sister Roseanna's affair with Johnse Hatfield in 1882, Fanny evolves from native bystander to judicious dissenter. Fanny escapes God-fearing superstitions, midnight raids, and blind allegiances through prudent choices separating her from her family. Although Fanny's judgments are harsh and at times overly simplistic, she learns to overcome the petty hatred that plagues her family and, in her own way, helps to preserve the McCoy clan.

summaries Numbering all the Bones Ann Rinaldi's slave narrative parallels the country's efforts to rebuild itself after the Civil War with a young girl's struggle to "make herself come true." After Lincoln signs the Emancipation Proclamation, Eulinda is torn between staying with her father, the kind but confused Mr. Hampton, and starting a new life with his slaves, her mother's family. Half-slave, half-white, Eulinda doesn't know where she belongs, how she will find her brother, or who she should trust. As the country reaches toward reconstruction, Eulinda meets the infamous Clara Barton and finds a way to make a new life for herself and others.
True to form, many of the events and characters in Rinaldi's Numbering All the Bones are real. Her fictional protagonist moves through the turbulent end of the war quickly, recounting battles and leaders to propel the plot and educate readers on the issues surrounding reconstruction at the national and individual level.

2002 2001 A BReak with Charity A Break with Charity, Ann Rinaldi’s story about the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, was awarded the ALA Best Book for Young Adults Award and named a New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age. Given Rinaldi’s keen eye for the female adolescent perspective, it’s easy to imagine why. Through the voice of Susanna English, Rinaldi illuminates the strict Puritan code under which the young women of Salem felt they had no freedoms, except to meet secretly in the parsonage and instigate the hysteria plaguing the witch trials. “All girls ‘twixt twelve and twenty are witches, don’t you know that?” says character Abigail Hobbs of the mysterious circle of seemingly bewitched girls. “How else can we accomplish our goal of becoming women?”
Much like Fanny in The Coffin Quilt, Susanna struggles to reveal the truth and protect her town and family from the man-made evil destroying it. The story highlights both adolescent and contemporary issues, including the privileges of gender and wealth and the false persecution of society’s outsiders. This novel strikes the best balance between history and fiction of the three summarized here and could be used in a language arts or history classroom.


Classroom Classroom The Coffin Quilt Classroom Use in combination with Arthur Miller's The Crucible
Explore gender issues in early America and compare with contemporary issues
Discuss coming of age issues for teens raised under various religious, political or cultural influences
Explore how historical fiction writers interpret history by using point of view, setting, and tone
Co-teach with history teacher

Use in combination with other slave narratives
Explore race issues during reconstruction years
Evaluate how historical fiction writers balance fact with fiction
Evaluate how perspective shapes reader interpretation
Co-teach with history teacher

Use in combination with contemporary novels about war or gang violence
Explore how family shapes identity
Discuss loyalty to friends, family, social and religious groups
Evaluate how author's selection of protagonist shapes reader understanding
Compare to mutlimedia recountings of feud on YouTube, wikipedia, and other websites

Activity: A Break with Charity Book Talk Book Trailor
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