The Trail of Tears by renowned Abenaki author, Joseph Bruchac, is part of the Step into Reading program from Random House books. This beginning chapter book recounts the story of the Cherokee forced relocation in 1838. This title is classified as a Step 5 book in the series because it provides an independent reading experience for students who are ready for chapters. This title features longer paragraphs and contains coloured illustrations that encourage young readers to try a chapter book. The story begins with a brief account of the Cherokee leader, John Ross, surveying his home for the last time as 17,000 Cherokee men, women, and children prepare to leave their homeland on the devastating Trail of Tears forced march. Combined with the accurate coloured illustrations the text allows young readers to experience and understanding a difficult moment in Cherokee history in the United States. Readers also see first-hand the courage and determination shown by the Cherokee on the march and how they continue to thrive in Oklahoma and North Carolina. The story ends with a description of the Cherokee Nation today. This levelled reader written by a Native American author provides young readers with a powerful history lesson as well showing the strength of character of the Cherokee people. Highly recommended. Lexile Level: 610; Guided Reading Level: P; DRA Level: 34-38.