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|Spooked! : how a radio broadcast and The war of the worlds sparked the 1938 invasion of America|
Author: Jarrow, Gail
Explores the famous War of the worlds radio broadcast from 1938.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 7.20
Points: 4.0 Quiz: 199708
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 8.50
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 76633
Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Honor, 2019
Kirkus Reviews (+) (06/15/18)
School Library Journal (+) (06/01/18)
Booklist (+) (06/01/18)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (+) (00/07/18)
The Hornbook (00/09/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 06/01/2018 Gr 7 Up—With a succinct and engaging story, Jarrow informs readers about the 1938 The War of the Worlds broadcast and why it became so famous. Opening on Halloween Eve, with details about the geopolitical tensions and the growing influence of radio, Jarrow contextualizes the climate in which the program aired. By using short chapters, varied font sizes, quotes, photographs, and illustrations from the source material—H.G. Wells's novel—she keeps readers involved in the fact-packed story. The chapter on the live broadcast is masterfully written in a style similar to an annotated transcript, with unobtrusive interjections that reveal clues for listeners that the radio show is a fictional narrative. The unvarnished profiles of the major contributors to the production humanize them, and it is illuminating to see the efforts of the team, which included two women. Jarrow effectively uses full-page spreads with excerpts of letters written to the Federal Communications Commission and Orson Welles that communicate the divided reactions to the broadcast. A discussion of the show's legacy, journalism, and noted hoaxes allows readers to evaluate current events in light of this notorious event. Jarrow concludes with a well-organized list of online resources. VERDICT A skillfully written title that deserves space in middle and high school libraries.—Hilary Writt, Sullivan University, Lexington, KY - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 06/01/2018 *Starred Review* Orson Welles and his colleagues were certain their radio broadcast of H. G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds would be a flop. Instead, on Halloween eve 1938, it shook the nation with fear of alien attack. Why were Americans so gullible? Notable nonfiction author Jarrow (Fatal Fever, 2015) sets the stage, or rather the living rooms, for a time when listening to radio broadcasts ranked as the country’s favorite pastime. With intriguing details, complemented by rarely seen archival photos and illustrated scenes from Wells’ original story, she explains how this medium worked and how actor Orson Welles designed, directed, and voiced popular radio dramas, along with the other writers, performers, and sound technicians for the Mercury Theatre program. Jarrow then pieces together the script and performance, highlighting elements used to heighten the tension. Numerous and astounding reactions to the panic, including an influx of emergency telephone calls, are also described. Although interesting in its own right, the author extrapolates on this phenomenon, comparing it to today’s fake-news controversy. In this vein, readers can see how some panicked listeners didn’t check other sources, while others enjoyed the drama by following its clues. Ensuing freedom of the press debates and a sampling of modern-day social media hoaxes extend the theme. An enriching bridge that connects history with current events. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.