Review Blog

Feb 16 2009

The sniper by James Riordan

cover image

Frances Lincoln Children's Books, 2008. ISBN 9781845078850
Ages 11+ With the German Army advancing, and the Russian Army still nowhere to be seen, Stalingrad is the last hope of stalling the army until help arrives. Going to school one day, Tania is surprised to find that they are assigned to fill sandbags to buffer the petrol storage, and the next few days, they are taken away and trained to use anti-aircraft guns. But later, when she takes a message to the army, she is drafted into a sniper training crew, and from there is smuggled back into Stalingrad to do what she was trained to do, kill Germans.
Base on a true story, the tale of this sixteen year old schoolgirl is riveting. We hear of her training in anti aircraft guns and then their use, followed by her sniper training and then putting that into action. Each step of the way takes us further into this young girl's life and how it was changed by war. The astonishing thing is that she survived the battle of Stalingrad, credited with many kills, and Riordan, working in the Battle of Stalingrad Museum in 2002, was invited to meet her, a little old woman sitting in the corner. From their discussions and discussions with others, following her death , Riordan wrote this book, a fitting tribute both to her bravery and those of all children caught up in war.
Fran Knight

Archived Blog Entries
Latest News
Environment Award for Children's Literature 2017
Book Week 2017 ideas - Escape to Everywhere
Speech Pathology shortlist 2017
2017 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals
2017 Branford Boase Award
2017 UKLA Book Awards
Little Rebels Children's Book Award 2017
10th UK Waterstones Children's Laureate
UK Children's Book Award 2017
Laugh Out Loud Awards 2017 shortlist
2017 Locus Awards Winners
Miles Franklin longlist 2017

ReadPlus Features
Print similar authors bookmark
Read similar authors
How to find lesson plans
Sample theme animation

Promote Reading
Staff holiday reading list 2016
South Australian Christian Schools Conference 2016 - Library Displays
Display calendars
Value of School Libraries
Library, Reading development and the Internet
Free Rights of the Reader Poster
Reviews: Author index
Bookmark and poster templates