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Parents' Guide to

Across Five Aprils

By Jennifer Docherty, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

This historical tale is captivating and memorable.

Across Five Aprils Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 18+


I think this book would be good for nobody. It was so boring. There is also violent descriptions.
age 18+

It’s Mediocre

I have seen children say “omg I hate this book it is the worst.” I don’t personally absolutely hate the book. I am in the eighth grade and usually I prefer books about adventure and magic, or romance like most middle schoolers do. I think this book is more suited for adults as it is a bit boring for an eighth grader. (My class of fourteen other teenagers would agree.) It is a bit slow going and I found it hard to tell when time had passed, it would be telling about Jethro and his family’s troubles and stuff, and it wouldn’t say he or anyone had aged and then it would be like, “and that April after the April before that April but on that third April...” It’s a bit confusing. I wouldn’t really recommend it for children or teenagers, maybe a fifty year old with a midlife crisis.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4 ):
Kids say (29 ):

Irene Hunt has created an engaging novel that vividly depicts the grand scope of the Civil War, while also showing its intimate impact on the lives of ordinary families. She draws from stories told by her grandfather, family letters, and historical research. In an eloquent but often folksy style, Hunt draws the reader into the farming life of southern Illinois, where young men see a chance to prove their manhood and speak of the war as being fun. Through the four long years of war, Jethro discovers the truth, with the death of one brother and the virtual loss of another when he chooses to fight for the Confederacy.

This is also a novel of a mother sending her children off to war, of a wife raising two children on her own, of a young woman facing the prospect of losing the man she loves. Brilliantly representing the passionate feelings of both sides in the Civil War, Hunt brings the reader to a fuller understanding of this conflict, showing both the futility of war and the breadth of its human consequences.

Book Details

  • Author: Irene Hunt
  • Genre: Historical Fiction
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Penguin Group
  • Publication date: January 1, 1964
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 9 - 12
  • Number of pages: 190
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

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