War of the Eagles

SKU: 9781551430997

Eric Walters
Grade Levels:
Six, Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten
Haida, Pacific NW, Tsimshian
Book Type:
Orca Book Publishers

Sale price$12.95


War of the Eagles is an historical novel set on the West Coast of Canada during the period of the Second World War. The main character is fourteen-year-old Jed, whose English father currently serves in Europe flying fighter planes for the RAF. Jed's Haida/Tsimshian mother works as the cook for the local Canadian military base nearby. Jed and his best friend, Tadashi Fukushima, a Japanese boy who lives with his family in a nearby fishing village, find interesting after school activities. Jed begins work as a part-time hunter for the army camp to supplement the military rations. Jed, his other, and grandmother live nearby in a Haida village. Both women act as strong guiding forces in the youth's life. When the soldiers torture and tease an eagle, Jed and Tad nurse the eagle back to health. Life is simple and each day brings new adventures for the boys as they grow into young men. But when the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbour everything changes and Jed must deal first-hand with Canadian law and racism as his best friend's family is interred. Even though Tad is second-generation Japanese-Canadian, the government moves the entire Japanese fishing village families to an undisclosed internment camp. The families must leave all their belongings, their fishing boats, and homes. Looters begin to ransack the Japanese homes but Jed stands up for his friends. Jed with the help of an understanding soldier manages to save many of the Fukushima family's prized possessions including Tad's baseball glove. Jed is devastated with the Canadian response because his First Nations relatives have enjoyed a relatively racist-free existence. Jed's wise grandmother helps the youth find a way to write a letter to Tad despite the sanctions against the Japanese housed in the camps. Jed begins to deal with the chaos of this aspect of wartime Canada as he remains friends with Tad even though he may never see his best friend any time soon. An engaging read especially for boys which treats the interracial and cultural divide in wartime Canada with sensitivity and clarity by bringing the message to a personal level. This novel is an authorized support resource for Alberta Education grade 10 English Language Arts. Saskatchewan Education recommends this novel for grades 6-9.

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