Blog Book Tour | “Callahan Crossroads” by Anola Pickett

Posted Sunday, 19 July, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “Callahan Crossroads” direct from the publisher Sweetwater Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Blog Book Tour | “Callahan Crossroads” by Anola PickettCallahan Crossroads
by Anola Pickett
Source: Direct from Publisher

Grown-ups said us kids could help our country win. Eat more corn. Give up sugar. Buy thrift stamps. Collect prune pits. But after a whole year doing this sissy stuff, we still hadn't won.

I wasn't old enough to enlist, so this summer I'd do something dangerous. Something tough and brave.

Twelve-year-old George's family won't take him seriously. He's ready to fight like a man on the front lines of the Great War, but instead he gets stuck on the home front, with nothing more exciting to do than look out for his younger sisters and elderly neighbour, Mrs. Schmitt.

But with no sign of victory in Europe, things are getting more and more tense at home, especially after George's older brother makes a startling announcement.

Set in 1918 Kansas City, this old-fashioned family drama brings you to the heart of America in World War I. Issue-driven and entertaining, it's a coming-of-age story that will resonate with readers today.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Genres: Children's Literature, Middle Grade, War Drama, Historical Fiction


Published by Sweetwater Books

on 14th July, 2015

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 192

Published By: Sweetwater Books (@SweetwaterBooks),
an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse via: #CallahanCrossroads + #AnolaPickett

About Anola Pickett

Anola Pickett is a Kansas City native, and although she’s lived in Chicago, St. Louis and Massachusetts, she’s always come back home. The oldest of six children, she grew up in a family that emphasized the importance of reading and education. She began writing stories in the third grade and went on to become a teacher and school librarian. Now retired from the classroom, she devotes a big part of her day to writing and research for historical novels for young readers. She especially prizes the stories her parents and grandmother told about their growing-up years in Kansas City.

Pickett enjoys school and library visits to talk about her books and about the craft of writing. She and her husband Peter Doyle enjoy traveling, especially to Hong Kong, where they visit their son and daughter-in-law and a beautiful red-haired granddaughter!

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Small towne life during WWI:

War dramas set during the World Wars do not oft show what happened on the homefront as much as some of the classic motion pictures I’ve watched on TCM. A lot of the smaller townes focused on what they could collect and provide for the war effort as much as help the children find ways in which their contributions could make them feel like they were doing something that helped. Pickett has found a strong balance between the colliding information being given out during George’s childhood and the efforts of everyone to find a way through to the future whilst doing what they can to provide safety and security in the present.

My Review of Callahan Crossroads:

George is itching to be old enough to accomplish more than his daily lot of chores in a family whose eldest son is questioning the merit of enlistment whilst America has gone to war; a childhood spent quite idyllic where a boy could be out-of-doors more than in if he minded his mother’s wishes. Yet George was growing up during a difficult time in American history where young boys wanted to leave their childhood behind and step into their adult shoes early-on; to not only provide for their family but to take pride in defending their country. George might not make all the best choices when it comes to neighbourhood activities with his best friend Jimmy, but at his core, he’s a young boy on the verge of maturity who cannot find how to make a difference in a changing world.

George is an observant pre-teen who understands quite a bit about what is happening in his small towne; not just in regards to the war effort, but the warning signs of domestic violence, the ignorance of prejudicial remarks, and the difficulties of trying to live whilst the hardship at home builds out of the needs of what is simply no longer available to procure. George takes most things in step with the moment, but there is a deeper thinking part of personality where you start to wonder if one day he might find the wings to voice his concerns and to speak his mind rather than to remain quiet and silently upset about what he understands.

Although there were touch situations on George’s block, he dealt with everything with a level-head and an earnestness of sincere compassion; especially when an elderly neighbour was the target of a gang of teenagers who knew better than to harass an older woman. George learnt a lot during the short spell we spent with him and his small towne, not only about the difficulty in understanding the wider scope of the war itself and how it affects everyone of an age who can be directly affected by it but for the grace in understanding how to effectively help your own family and friends.

George’s greatest gift was the friendship he provided to his neighbours and how he learnt at a young age to stand up for what was right on their behalf. There are a lot of healthy life lessons etched into the background of the novel whilst giving younger readers enough to chew on in regards to how they might have have felt to be George. His mother did not always relent on his schedule of chores, but we saw a budding feminist emerging out of his mother whilst his Aunt equally started to defy their generation for being progressive towards accepting a man’s day of work as a woman. The turn of the century was a trying time for equality and the rights for women to achieve an equal amount of both pay and recognition for the work they did.

Pickett wrote an endearing novel that could be best served as a gateway towards reading more stores during the World Wars era whilst teaching children about history through a story where the characters feel quite alive on the page.

On the writing style of Anola Pickett:

Pickett has found a way to tap into the dialogue and the literal phrasing of how people talked in the early 20th Century whilst grounding her novel in the mind-set of children and adults during times of war. She writes her narrative with a keen sense of knowing younger minds will be reading this story, and has written in things they might expect to see or hear if they had lived a life similar to George. She openly talks about how life is made difficult due to a lack of resources and how even what you smell outside in the air might be something your not quite keen on knowing it’s origin. Pickett’s historical fiction voice rings realistically true and convicting of the generation she is penning.

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This Blog Tour Stop is courtesy of Cedar Fort, Inc.:

Cedar Fort Publishing & Media

Visit the Virtual Road Map of “Callahan Crossroads” Blog Tour:

Callahan Crossroads Blog Tour via Cedar Fort Publishing & Media

Find out what I am hosting next via Cedar Fort in 2015!

Visit with me again soon!

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{SOURCES: Author photograph, Author Biography, Book Synopsis and Book Cover of “Callahan Crossroads”, blog tour badge and Cedar Fort badge were provided by Cedar Fort Publishing & Media and used with permission. Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2015.

I’m a social reader | I tweet as I read
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2015 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Sunday, 19 July, 2015 by jorielov in 20th Century, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Brothers and Sisters, Bullies and the Bullied, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Childhood Friendship, Children's Literature, Coming-Of Age, Disillusionment in Marriage, Divorce & Martial Strife, Domestic Violence, During WWI, Historical Fiction, Indie Author, Juvenile Fiction, Literature for Boys, Middle Grade Novel, Military Families of the Deployed, Mother-Son Relationships, Political Narrative & Modern Topics, Prejudicial Bullying & Non-Tolerance, Realistic Fiction, Siblings, Small Towne USA, Teenage Relationships & Friendships, the Nineteen Hundreds, The World Wars, War Drama, Warfare & Power Realignment, Women's Rights




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