The Wampum Exchange

The Wampum Exchange by Rosemary McKinley

(Summary taken from an email the author sent me.) “Long Island author, Rosemary McKinley has written a young adult historical
novella, The Wampum Exchange, set in 1650, Southold, New
York. A
twelve-year-old boy has a chance meeting with a Native American
boy and
their worlds connect in a most interesting way. The tale is told
their daily lives, giving the reader a glimpse into life in
America. Middle
grade readers, as well as adults would enjoy reading
this story.”

This is a short, fun little story about life in 1650 in Southold, New York. It looks like Ms. McKinley put a lot of time into researching life in that area and in that time period, and it shows in this story. There are some fun facts about the time period woven into the storyline, and I think it’s a great way to teach children history. They are learning and they don’t know it! I didn’t know much about the wampum and so it was fun for me to learn as well. The story is written in a very simple style, but that makes it easy to read. The characters are fairly well developed, and the setting is well described. There are some really good descriptions in the story.

I enjoyed reading this story and will most likely read it to my kids. I have it in e-reader format, so it’s not one I can just hand over to them to read. It will be a good time to talk about life during that time period and discuss our country’s history, which I definitely enjoy doing. This would be a really good story for elementary school children to read in class, or have read to them. You get a fun story and history included! Of course, it is historical fiction, but it’s based on as much fact as Ms. McKinley could find. I liked this story and recommend it, especially to teachers and younger readers.

Rating: G Clean!

Recommendation: Third grade and up.  This would be a great silent read or read-aloud book.

0 thoughts on “The Wampum Exchange”

  1. This is a great book and a must for young children to get a good idea of how life was back then. Very informational and fun to read. Keeps your attention.


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