The Cruisers by Walter Dean Myers
The Cruisers write an alternative newspaper at the DaVinci Academy, a Harlem school for the gifted and talented. The Cruisers are assigned the responsibility of mediating peace for a Civil War project. Tensions escalate when the Union and Confederate sympathizers get too personally involved with the project.
The history teacher guides these eighth graders through thoughtful ideas. The principal has control of the entire situation. The Cruisers (Kambui, Bobbi, LaShanda, Zander) are aware that they are just "cruising" through with C's and they might be expelled if fighting occurs. Several ideas and questions are brought up in this realistic fiction.
The one-and-only Walter Dean Myers did it again. He asks the right questions to get to the big picture and expands ideas. The characters with their own perfect voices are the best things about this book. These children are respected and work through many issues. Walter Dean Myers wants more for these children. What Myers did was to put the first chapter of the next book at the end of this book. Can you believe it? I've already read the first chapter of the next book in this series, King's Gambit.