Project Description


The Tree That Owns Itself

by Gail Langer Karwoski & Loretta Johnson Hammer
illustrated by James Watling

Georgia provides the backdrop for twelve historical fiction stories.

The twelve stories in this book by teachers Loretta Hammer and Gail Karwoski take place in Georgia from the Revolutionary War period to the present. Fictional characters―often children―interact with the heroes and villains of history, from Olympic weightlifter Paul Anderson, once the strongest man alive, to the pirate Blackbeard; from Revolutionary War heroine Nancy Hart to John Ross, leader of the Cherokee Nation.

This long-overdue collection of historical fiction for young readers not only makes history more enjoyable, it educates as it entertains. The authors have provided a time line to put the stories in historical perspective, a map to show the location of events, and a concluding note following each story that reveals the facts behind the fiction.

Paperback: $8.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-120-3
Total Pages: 149
Size: 6 x 8
Language: English
Accelerated Reader
AR Quiz#: 54856
AR Reading Level: 5.1
AR Points: 6

F&P (Fountas & Pinnell)
F&P Level: U
F&P Grade: 5


“Historical figures ringing with authenticity are paired with fictional young characters who are alive with fear, courage, hope, and disbelief. Energetic pacing and keen plot development pull readers in.” ―School Library Journal

“…The stories are easy to read, without feeling dummied down or ‘babyish’ – perfect for upper-elementary grades on up through middle school (though even high schoolers could find this useful…they’re all entertaining and enjoyable. I can already think of ways to implement this in a classroom or school library setting, as well as see it being a good book for ‘storytime’ in a home.” ―A Word’s Worth


Georgia Author of the Year (Juvenile Literature) ―Georgia Writers Association 1996

Storytelling World Resource Awards (honor, Tellable Stories-Ages 13-17) ―Storytelling World magazine 1997

25 Books All Young Georgians Should Read ―Georgia Center for the Book 2010

Meet the Author

Gail Langer Karwoski taught third- and fourth-grade students for many years. She received a BA from the University of Massachusetts and an MA from the University of Minnesota. She lives in Georgia. You can visit her website here.

Meet the Author

Loretta Johnson Hammer teaches fourth grade. After graduating from Washburn University with a BA, she received her MEd and EdS from the University of Georgia. She lives in Georgia.

Meet the Illustrator

James Watling lives in Canada, where he is a professor of art education at McGill University. He has illustrated over twenty-five books for children.