|Anna Strong : a spy during the American Revolution|
Author: Marsh, Sarah Glenn
The thrilling true story of the female spy who helped save the Revolution.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.40
Points: .5 Quiz: 515497
Kirkus Reviews (01/01/20)
School Library Journal (04/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 03/15/2020 Marsh tells the story of the aptly named Anna Strong, who rebelled against her loyalist family to spy for the cause of American independence. Strong was the only woman in the Culper Ring, a group of spies who provided information on the British army to General Washington’s troops. The main body of the book, which features attractive, computer-generated images that resemble painted cartoons, offers straightforward, compelling vignettes of Strong’s adventures, such as when she eavesdropped on British soldiers and bribed them to let her visit her husband in jail. The focus, however, is on two code systems: the Culper Ring’s use of numbers to represent secret words in their letters, and especially Strong’s method of hanging linen out to dry in coded arrangements. Sprinkled throughout Green’s illustrations are “notes” showing the Culper Ring’s codes; these are explained in a closing glossary that helps readers make their own secret messages. While this activity should be a hit, placing the explanation with the illustrations would have been helpful. Overall, a great purchase for the age group. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 04/01/2020 PreS-Gr 3—General George Washington was looking for new and inventive ways to beat the British during the Revolutionary War. He decided to use spies. Basing the book's narrative on primary source materials, Marsh describes the role of Long Island native Anna Smith Strong as a spy in the Culper Spy Ring. Strong utilized her family's elevated place in society, her skills as a socialite, and her family farm's physical location to work in her favor to gather and pass information from the British to the Patriots. Meanwhile, male spies (including her husband Selah) were caught, imprisoned, and sometimes even hanged. Strong had to be very careful. Green's illustrations complement the story with scenes of Strong among the British, clearly listening, and show number codes like the ones the Culper Ring used in their messages. The illustrations have a "spyglass" perspective and include lots of floral patterns to camouflage the protagonist into the scenes. Additional material covers more information about the Culper Ring Code Book, how to make invisible ink, Marsh's research notes about how historians came to believe Strong was a spy, an artist's note about the illustrations, and a bibliography. VERDICT A spirited book about a lesser-known historical figure. Recommended for elementary school and public libraries.—Lia Carruthers, Gill St. Bernard's School, Gladstone, NJ - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 03/15/2020 - Copyright 2020 Booklist.