Publisher's Note:  

Two boys, best friends, are torn between opposing sides of bloody war in 1862. Johnny is white, and Chaska is part Dakota. The boys have seen whites treat the Dakota with injustice and cruelty. And they have witnessed the Dakota seek revenge with violence and murder. Can Johnny and Chaska still be friends? Can they even survive? The answers are unclear as battle after battle of the Dakota Conflict tears apart their homes and the lives of everyone they love. Both boys must somehow find the strength and courage to face the terrible danger.

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Lerner Publishing Group

Battle Cry

by Jan Neubert Schultz

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Overall Review:  

Crack open Battle Cry and find yourself transported to the wild Minnesota frontier. Tensions between the whites and Dakotas are high, and sixteen-year-old Johnny suddenly finds himself in the midst of battle where there is never a dull moment. Intense and action-packed, Battle Cry includes plenty of gunfights, Indian battles and dangerous rendezvous. 

Young Johnny is a tough yet likable character and makes for an excellent role model. He has the determination, loyalty and grit necessary to rescue those in need. I especially liked that the book is more than a historical retelling of the 1862 Dakota Conflict but an up-close look at the attitudes and feelings of those white settlers and Dakota tribes involved. Battle Cry brings American history to life while being thoroughly engaging and highly entertaining. 

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language: 10 religious exclamations; 2 mild obscenities


Violence/Gore: A character is cut with a razor across his face; several battles occur where people are shot; numerous explosions cause damage to a fort; Dakota prisoners are assaulted by an angry mob; a man drowns; a deer is killed and skinned; characters come across the aftermath of a massacre and see puddles of blood surrounding bloated and “hacked up” bodies; around forty Dakotas are hung from gallows. 


Sexual/Nudity: none


Mature Subject Matter:  

Death, war, robbery/thieving, murder and racial injustice.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

The Dakotas drink to celebrate their war victory.

Reviewed By Rachel
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