Grade 5-9 This novel focuses on events from Christmas 1967 through May 1968, a time of war in Vietnam and unrest in the United States. Molly's brother, Patrick, is serving in the area of Khe Sanh, a region that is receiving high-intensity shelling, and the 15-year-old contends with the duality of emotions occasioned by pride and concern for him and by her daily exposure to antiwar feelings. She observes how heated people can be about the war, one way or the other, but no one seems to bother to know the details; she wants to learn everything she possibly can about it. Volunteering in the VA hospital over the objections of her parents, she witnesses the frustration and anger of the seriously injured vets and the death of one of them. The story is rich in detail about the period: hippies; demonstrations; the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert Kennedy; the lure of the coffeehouses, thrift shops, and bookstores of Harvard Square; and always the fate of the Boston Red Sox. Molly is an engaging protagonist with her own issues, and her questioning mind seeks honest answers. Average-quality, captioned black-and-white historical photos appear with the back matter. This title will be popular where readers seek out "Dear America" and similar series, and it complements American history studies.
Original title: Where Have All the Flowers Gone?: The Diary of Molly MacKenzie Flaherty, Boston, Massachusetts, 1968
Genre: Fiction→ Children & Young Adult→ Historical Fiction