The Enemy

The Enemy

Detroit 1954

Book - 2017
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"Set in 1954, this compelling historical novel tells the story of a young girl's struggles and triumphs in the aftermath of World War II. The war is over, but the threat of communism and the Cold War loom over the United States. In Detroit, Michigan, twelve-year-old Marjorie Campbell struggles with the ups and downs of family life, dealing with her veteran father's unpredictable outbursts, keeping her mother's stash of banned library books a secret, and getting along with her new older "brother", the teenager her family took in after his veteran father's death. When a new girl from Germany transfers to Marjorie's class, Marjorie finds herself torn between befriending Inga and pleasing her best friend, Bernadette, by writing in a slam book that spreads rumors about Inga. Marjorie seems to be confronting enemies everywhere--at school, at the library, in her neighborhood, and even in the news. In all this turmoil, Marjorie tries to find her own voice and figure out what is right and who the real enemies actually are."--
Publisher: Honesdale, Pennsylvania : Calkins Creek, an imprint of Highlights, [2017]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781629794983
Characteristics: 256 pages ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: Detroit 1954


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May 04, 2021

This historical fiction account of the hysteria and us vs. them thinking of the 1950s is perfect for readers poised to delve a little more in-depth into the Cold War.

The author captures so much atmosphere from the time period, giving the reader a broader feel of the time period and what it was like to live, as a kid, back then. The scene with the main character in the bathtub was quite moving, for this reason.

The main character struggles with internalizing the polarizing rhetoric of the Cold War, trying to sort out if neighbors are enemies or spies, best friends are bullies, parents are instigators and commies, and recuperating WWII soldiers "Nazis" or veterans.

An excellent historical fiction read!

Nov 03, 2018

Great juvenile historical fiction. It was easy to be transported to 1954 in this book, and Sara Holbrook does an excellent job of exploring the way the Red Scare impacted everyone, in a way that is sure to catch and hold older kids attention.


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