Monday, April 16, 2018

Knit Your Bit

Knit Your Bit: A World War I Story. Deborah Hopkinson. Illustrated by Steven Guarnaccia. 2013. 32 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: When Pop left to be a soldier, I wanted to go with him. "I'm brave," I told Pop. "I know, Mikey," he said, patting my shoulder. "And you'll need to be, 'cause it takes just as much courage to stay behind."

Premise/plot: Mikey says he wants to do something BIG to help the war effort. While his sister, Ellie, learns to knit so she can knit her bit, Mikey resists such a simple, little thing. Besides knitting is for girls. BUT when a knitting bee--to be held at Central Park--is announced, Mikey finds himself entering with two of his friends. Perhaps he enters because he's dared to enter. But once he begins knitting lessons, he realizes that it's not so simple and anything but a 'little' contribution to the war effort.

My thoughts: I enjoyed this historical picture book. It was inspired by real events.
The New York Times reported that the event raised $4,000. Mrs. Ethel Rizzo of East 67th Street, who completed an entire sweater in around six hours, won the prize for fastest knitter. Over the course of three days, volunteers knitted 50 sweaters, 48 mufflers, and 224 pairs of socks. Prize winners included four blind women, two men, an eighty-three year old woman, and four children under the age of eleven. 
I would definitely recommend this one! I found it a compelling story with a fascinating author's note.

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 8 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

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