word craft


Everything about Sophia’s War

In 1776, the War of Inde­pen­dence comes to New York City, and to twelve-year-old Sophia Calderwood’s fam­i­ly. William, her old­er sol­dier broth­er, has been miss­ing since the defeat of George Washington’s Army at the Bat­tle of Brooklyn. 

When the British occu­py the city, Lieu­tenant John André of the Eng­lish Army, is board­ed at the Calder­wood home. He and Sophia devel­op a flir­ta­tious friend­ship, which is test­ed when the girl dis­cov­ers that William is being held in The Sug­ar­house, a noto­ri­ous British prison. She hopes André can help. When he choos­es not to, Sophia strug­gles to save her broth­er by herself.

Sophia's War

Behind the story

  1. I was raised in Brook­lyn Heights, the site of the biggest bat­tle of the Amer­i­can Rev­o­lu­tion. It was that bat­tle, which brought the Eng­lish to Man­hat­tan, which they occu­pied for the rest of the war.
  2. The place where I lived was also not far from the Brook­lyn bay where the British had pris­on­er ships. Fifty thou­sand Amer­i­cans died on those ships. The beach was lit­tered with human bones.  read more

Sam­ple Chapter

Read Chap­ter 1, read­able online and as a down­load­able PDF.


Teach­ers’ Guide

Read­ing Group Guide

Pin­ter­est Board by Kara Strode, back­ground pho­tos and sites for Sophi­a’s War

The Bat­tle of Brook­lyn: take a video tour with John Turturro

The Gris­ly His­to­ry Brook­lyn’s Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War Mar­tyrs,” Bene­dict Cos­grove, Smith­son­ian mag­a­zine, 13 March 2017

The Death and Res­ur­rec­tion of Major John Andre,” John Knight, Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Rev­o­lu­tion, 2018

A new book by Avi, Loy­al­ty, avail­able next spring, will tell a sto­ry of the Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War from a boy’s point of view. It will be fas­ci­nat­ing to jux­ta­pose these two texts in your read­ing group or classroom.

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