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Grades 6-8 Biography

Adoff, Arnold, Malcolm X
Events that influenced the life and thought of Malcolm X

Beah, Ishmael, A Long Way Gone (NEW!)
It is estimated that, right now, there are 300,000 child soldiers being forced to fight in conflicts around the world. Beah used to be one of them. This is his harrowing account of wielding an AK-47 for the government of Sierra Leone.

Bernier-Grand, Carmen T., Cesar: Si, Se Puede! = Yes, We Can!
In free verse, the compelling story of Cesar Chavez

Chaflin, Edward Beecher, Soujourner Truth and the Struggle for Freedom
The life of the former slave who gained renown as an abolitionist and advocate of women’s rights.

Cleary, Beverly, A Girl from Yamhill: A Memoir
Beverly Cleary, one of the most beloved children's authors of all time, tells the story of her childhood, complete with the everyday joys and sorrows of growing up.

• Cwiklik, Robert, Sequoyah (5-8)
Sequoyah believed the Cherokee nation would endure if their oral language could be written down; his grueling work offered the Cherokee nation literacy.

Dahl, Roald, Boy
A funny, sometimes painful, memoir of Dahl's experiences and exploits during his school years.

Dash, Joan, A Dangerous Engine : Benjamin Franklin, from Scientist to Diplomat (NEW!)
Dash ably covers Franklin's life but focuses on his lifelong interest in science and invention. He took measurements of the Gulf Stream, closely observed natural phenomena on land and sea, fiddled with magic squares invented a type of wood-burning stove still used today, the lightning rod, bifocals, and much more.

Faber, Doris, Oh Lizzie! The Life of Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Ferris, Jeri, Walking the Road to Freedom: A Story About Sojourner Truth

Feinberg, Barbara S., Franklin D. Roosevelt, Gallant President

Franchere, Ruth, Cesar Chavez
The life of the man who organized the grape pickers of California and led a nationwide grape boycott to get better wages and working conditions for migrant workers.

Freedman, Russell
, Indian Chiefs
Six of the greatest Indian leaders of the nineteenth century tell of their attempts to hold on to their way of life as the white man encroaches on their lands.

Fritz, Jean, The Double Life of Pocahontas (5-8)
Colonial Jamestown during the last ten years of Pocahontas’s life.

Gibson, William, The Miracle Worker
Annie Sullivan's titanic struggle to release a young blind and deaf girl from her terrifying prison of darkness and silence.

Hautzig, Esther, The Endless Steppe
This autobiographical novel describes the 5 years Esther Rudomin and her family spent in a Soviet forced labor camp.

Hunter, Edith Fisher
, Child of the Silent Night
The true story of Laura Bridgman, a deaf and blind girl who pioneered the way for teaching other handicapped youngsters.

Jackson, Jesse, Make a Joyful Noise unto the Lord; the Life of Mahalia Jackson, Queen of Gospel Singers.

Kerley, Barbara, Walt Whitman: Words for America
A moving tribute to Walt Whitman, capturing his remarkable humanity and compassion

Kherdian, David, The Road from Home
Verna Dumehijan was born to a prosperous Armenian family in Turkey, spending a happy childhood until 1915, when the Turkish government deported her family. Author is the son of the heroine of this story.

Killilea, Marie, Karen
True story of human courage, patience and triumph as a small girl conquers cerebral palsy.

Killilea, Marie, With Love from Karen—sequel to Karen

Kraske, Robert, Marooned: The Strange But True Adventures of Alexander Selkirk, the Real Robinson Crusoe (NEW!)
Presents the story of Scottish mariner Alexander Selkirk and his experiences marooned on a South Pacific island for four years.

Kroeber, Theodora, Ishi, Last of His Tribe
Story of a tiny group who survived by becoming a hidden people.

Lobel, Anita
, No Pretty Pictures (6-12)
Children’s book illustrator Anita Lobel tells her Holocaust survival story.

McCunn, Ruthanne, Lum, Thousand Pieces of Gold (5-8)
The true story of Polly Bemis, who was brought as a slave from China to America and eventually became a pioneer of the early American West.

Meigs, Cornelia, Invincible Louisa
In this true story of Louisa May Alcott, you'll find out what really happened to Jo (Louisa) and her sisters and whether there really was a Laurie.

McGovern, Ann, The Secret Soldier: The Story of Deborah Sampson (6-8)
An American patriot during the Revolutionary War travels alone

Mongo, Ferdinand N., Letters to Horseface: Being the Story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Journey to Italy, 1769-70, When He Was a Boy of Fourteen

Morrison, Dorothy N. Under a Strong Wind: The Adventures of Jessie Benton Fremont The adventurous life of a daughter of a United States senator and wife of a frontier explorer.

Paulsen, Gary, Woodsong
A memoir about Paulsen's intimate relationship with Minnesota's north woods and the dog team he trained for Alaska's Iditarod race and the mesmerizing day-by day account of his first try at this 1,180 mile race.

Rappoport, Ken
, Lebron James : King On and Off the Court (NEW!)
A gift for Cleveland and the league. Examines the life and career of basketball star LeBron James, discussing his upbringing, success in the NBA, and charity work.

Rumford, James
, Sequoyah: The Cherokee Man Who Gave His People Writing
The man who created a writing system for the Cherokee language

Singer, Isaac Bashevis, A Day of Pleasure
Autobiographical stories of the author's memories of his youth in Poland.

Sullivan, George, Berenice Abbott, Photographer : An Independent Vision (NEW!)
Presents a look at the life and work of New York photographer Berenice Abbot, from her early years in the bohemian communities of Paris and Greenwich Village to her career as a famous photographer.

Tobias, Tobi, Maria Tallchief
A famous American Indian ballerina