Cover image for The journal of Scott Pendleton Collins : a World War II soldier
Title:
The journal of Scott Pendleton Collins : a World War II soldier
Author:
Myers, Walter Dean, 1937-2014.
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Scholastic, [1999]

©1999
Physical Description:
140 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm.
Summary:
A seventeen-year-old soldier from central Virginia records his experiences in a journal as his regiment takes part in the D-Day invasion of Normandy and subsequent battles to liberate France.
Language:
English
Reading Level:
810 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 5.0 4.0 34709.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 5.3 6 Quiz: 14867 Guided reading level: T.
ISBN:
9780439050135
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

Each harrowing day of battle in France convinces 17-year-old Scott Pendleton Collins that he may not survive. In desperation, he records his thoughts, fears, and hopes in a journal he has carried since his first days as a soldier in Basic Training at Fort Dix.


Author Notes

Walter Dean Myers was born on August 12, 1937 in Martinsberg, West Virginia. When he was three years old, his mother died and his father sent him to live with Herbert and Florence Dean in Harlem, New York. He began writing stories while in his teens. He dropped out of high school and enlisted in the Army at the age of 17. After completing his army service, he took a construction job and continued to write.

He entered and won a 1969 contest sponsored by the Council on Interracial Books for Children, which led to the publication of his first book, Where Does the Day Go? During his lifetime, he wrote more than 100 fiction and nonfiction books for children and young adults. His works include Fallen Angels, Bad Boy, Darius and Twig, Scorpions, Lockdown, Sunrise Over Fallujah, Invasion, Juba!, and On a Clear Day. He also collaborated with his son Christopher, an artist, on a number of picture books for young readers including We Are America: A Tribute from the Heart and Harlem, which received a Caldecott Honor Award, as well as the teen novel Autobiography of My Dead Brother.

He was the winner of the first-ever Michael L. Printz Award for Monster, the first recipient of the Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement, and a recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults. He also won the Coretta Scott King Award for African American authors five times. He died on July 1, 2014, following a brief illness, at the age of 76.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 5^-8. Writing in May 1944, 17-year-old Collins has no inkling of the massive military offensive he is about to take part in. Myers captures nicely the shift from the fraternity and the boredom of life on the base to the terror and confusion of D-Day. The action and imagery are explicit but not exploitative as Collins survives the landing and pushes on through subsequent battles and skirmishes to secure the town of St. Lo, which is now little more than a pile of rubble topped by the ruins of Notre Dame. Myers' believable portrayal of Collins as a political naif may surprise readers who know far more about World War II than the soldier caught in its midst. The least successful elements here are the handful of letters to relatives and a girlfriend back home. They barely suggest a home life for Collins and don't reveal much of an inner life either. Though it doesn't dig beneath the surface of D-Day events, this My Name Is America series book is still an emotional read that should easily find an audience. --Randy Meyer


School Library Journal Review

Gr 7-10-When Private Scott Collins's journal begins, he is preparing, along with thousands of other young men, for D-Day, less than five weeks away. When it ends, Scott, now 18, is again waiting to cross the English Channel; he has been wounded in France and has been promoted to sergeant-not simply because he is a good soldier, but also because he has proven to be a "survivor," when so many others have been killed. Readers observe Scott lose both his belief that the Allied invasion will end the war quickly and his innocence-he has seen hundreds die, some by his own hand. While no more graphic than the subject demands, this brief novel presents an accurate depiction of the horror of battle. The narrative voice is engaging and believable, with only a few lapses that sound like explanations provided for today's readers. Scott emerges as a likable and realistic character, one who grows from youth to manhood in a matter of weeks. Young teens who appreciated Saving Private Ryan and The Thin Red Line ought to be moved and drawn to the Journal as well. A short epilogue gives thumbnail sketches of the major players' lives after wartime, and a photographic gallery helps set and expand the historical situation.-Coop Renner, Coldwell Elementary-Intermediate School, El Paso, TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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