Children / Teens
Wheatmark Publishing LLC
December 2019 ISBN 9781627877534
194 pages The author will make this book available for sale at the Author Pavilion during the Festival.
In the summer of 1941, the Schultz family lives a modest suburban life in a small town in central New Jersey -- even as the shadow of war grows closer. Though painfully aware of the dire political climate of the time, they work hard to instill their children with wholesome American values rather than crippling existential fears. Lenny, oldest of the five children, succeeds at school, plays alley ball with his friends and siblings, and occasionally listens to the radio or his father's conversations, which all seem to center around the events in Europe. Life is good. That is, until the neighborhood bully, Louis, comes along. A neglected child doomed to inherit the violent, racist ways of his alcoholic father, Louis increasingly antagonizes Lenny, culminating in a foolhardy dare to see which of them is brave enough to enter the Prescotts' allegedly haunted mansion. Lenny accepts Louis's challenge not out of spite or a desire to be seen as brave, but out of a need to prove to the world what he already knows to be true: that Louis, like all bullies, tyrants, and war-mongering dictators, is a coward. The only hope for liberation lies in direct confrontation, not appeasement. Can Lenny keep the evil at home at bay while the forces of evil are gathering abroad? Lenny's Dare: A Novel of Youth in a Time of War captures the essential incongruity of pre-WWII American life -- a world where children at home grew, played, and went to school while great forces abroad gathered like clouds portending the deadliest storm the world had ever seen.More/less
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