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Tragic nonfiction event, how to handle?

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Dionna

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Question for you awesome folks. How would you handle presenting a nonfiction PB that deals with a terrible event in history? What if there is no happy ending, though there is a hero in the midst of the tragedy?
#1 - January 26, 2016, 02:23 PM

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Lots of famous folks who are PB subjects have died. The one that comes to mind is about Amelia Earhart. http://www.amazon.com/Night-Flight-Earhart-Crosses-Atlantic/dp/1416967338
You might want to check it out from your library.
#2 - January 26, 2016, 02:38 PM
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There are also books I saw featured on Reading Rainbow that dealt with 9/11. http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-09-09/entertainment/sc-ent-0907-books-kids-20110909_1_fireboat-picture-book-john-j-harvey

And more: http://www.popsugar.com/moms/Children-Books-About-Sept-11-19020896#photo-19020896

But as to your question how would I handle it: I truly don't know. It's something I've been puzzling over recently, though.

Good luck!
#3 - January 26, 2016, 02:43 PM
« Last Edit: January 26, 2016, 02:47 PM by stephanie-lucianovic »
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I think it depends on what age group you're writing for in the picture book. For older picture books, which teachers use in schools, you can focus on the hero and what s/he did that made that person a hero. That way the tragic circumstances aren't necessarily the take-away the child focuses on. For the very young, say 2-4 years old, I personally wouldn't feel comfortable with tragedy in a picture book.

But that's just my opinion.
#4 - January 26, 2016, 02:59 PM

Dionna

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Thanks, ladies, for sharing your insights.
#5 - January 27, 2016, 04:33 AM

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Closer to home, my PB biographies of Sitting Bull and Sequoyah present true, unhappy endings. They are made a bit more hopeful by discussing the subjects' legacies, though.
#6 - January 27, 2016, 05:20 AM
PRUDENCE, THE PART-TIME COW, A CHIP OFF THE OLD BLOCK, BUSY BUS series, EMERGENCY KITTENS, and more!
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Dionna

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Thanks, Jody. I hope to check out your titles soon! (Love the titles of your titles in you sig line!!)
#7 - January 27, 2016, 07:36 AM
« Last Edit: January 27, 2016, 07:38 AM by Dionna »

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 :cheesy Thanks, Dionna!
#8 - January 27, 2016, 10:42 AM
PRUDENCE, THE PART-TIME COW, A CHIP OFF THE OLD BLOCK, BUSY BUS series, EMERGENCY KITTENS, and more!
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If it's a biography, you can also put the "tragic event" in the backmatter and concentrate on the person's contribution in the story itself.
#9 - January 27, 2016, 11:08 AM
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