Travel back to the time of when Pearl Harbor is bombed by Japan and the U.S. enters World War II. The government also begins relocating U.S citizens of Japanese descent to camps like the one in Gila River, Arizona that Tetso, his sister and mother are sent to. The government is worried these citizens may have collaborated with Japan, and even take their father, who speaks little English, for questioning. Tetso leaves behind his home, the family's beloved dog, Lefty, and baseball, the sport he loves and the game his father and he had spent hours practicing together. In Arizona, they find dust, heat, and difficult conditions, including boredom and no baseball. But a group of boys and one father in the camp have an idea to clear land in the desert to build a baseball field. It takes a long time, days in which Tetso's sister becomes ill, and their father still does not return to them. But eventually baseball comes to Gila River and begins to change things for the better helping them all survive until they are released to go back to their homes. Readers of A Diamond in the Desert by Kathryn Fitzmaurice will learn about a sad time in our history but also meet a great group of boys and families who love and live, talk and play baseball. Grade 5 and up.
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I am the Library Media Center director at Patton School in Arlington Heights where I help students from kindergarten through 5th grade find terrific independent reading for enjoyment and information, and teach students the skills to use information and technology safely and productively and to connect, communicate and share with others. I have four grown children, a large black dog, (flat coat retriever) and a small striped cat. I am an obessive Chicago Cubs fan and I love to run.