The Soldier and the Squirrel has been accepted in The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library Museum Shop! We could not be more honored. The Library has always placed emphasis on supporting our military, our veterans and The Purple Heart. We hope that with this placement, students and children visiting the library will open to the discussion of our wounded.
The Soldier And The Squirrel is the story of a loyal squirrel (Rocky),his hillside friends, and a wounded soldier he calls Mister. Rocky and his friends live behind the soldier's house and watch his family every day. But one day the soldier returns home with a Purple Heart. Rocky begins to question the meaning in all of this and in the end discovers the meaning of life.
Why is this book relevant?
The Soldier and the Squirrel is not just a book - it is a tool to introduce our youth to the humanity behind the wounded warrior, as well as open the conversation between parent and child about the very real effects of war, while sharing a story that reminds us all that the greatest blessings and most meaningful moments in life are often the smallest ones.
Never before has the term Wounded Warrior been more prevalent than today. With the movie American Sniper starring Bradley Cooper, the latest Dancing with the Stars contestant, the injured troop is reentering society on a whole new platform. The long-suffering Vietnam era stereotype of Born on the Forth of July is gradually morphing into a series of pop culture anomalies that are striking a cord with demographic darlings from Madison Avenue to Hollywood Boulevard. The question is why?
Perhaps for the first time, we are able to hold our war heroes with a reverence today's youth can appreciate as topics of award - winning movies, video games, YouTube clips of amputees accomplishing super-hero feats, social media shares of images of our wounded as beautiful human beings embracing their condition and inspiring others along the way. The wounded warrior is today's super-hero. But what about tomorrow?
As with anything that trends, the momentum eventually fades to the dull roar of what came before. Wars will continue, and men and women will continue to return home to communities that may or may not support their war. Political climates will change and the dynamic of supporting our military will take various forms. But one thing that should never change, is our country's support for our returning wounded, no matter what the reason was for going to war.
This is why I wrote The Soldier and the Squirrel - in order to ensure continued support for our aging wounded veterans, it is important to introduce their sacrifice to the younger generation, today.
Feedback from parents has been extremely positive:
"I had tears in my eyes at one point but not because I was sad. It was because I felt so much, and it was such a beautiful feeling." Bernadette
Teachers who have read the book to their class have requested additional copies for their library:
"I have never seen the kids so quiet while listening to a story. The discussion we had following the book went on so long I wish we had more time. The next time I read it, I'm going to create a lesson around it." Diane Schultz, Grade 4 North Park Elementary
The Soldier and the Squirrel is dedicated to the Toppin family, for their sacrifice.
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To request a presentation of The Soldier and the Squirrel by the author and Purple Heart recipients for your school, classroom or organization, please use the Contact page.
Nuthouse Publishing P.O, Box 1931, Rancho Mirage, California 92270