Breaking Stalin’s Nose

A 2012 Newbery Honor Book

Written and Illustrated by Eugene Yelchin

Breaking Stalin’s Nose is a very interesting tale, told from the perspective of a young communist boy, who strongly believes in communist ways. Young Sasha has wanted to become a Young Pioneer since he can remember, and follow in the footsteps of Stalin. When Sasha is finally old enough to become a Young Pioneer, everything and anything that can go wrong does. Will he ever become a Pioneer? The trouble is set off by Sasha’s father, one of the most dependable secret police officers, being arrested, and one of his many roommates kick him out of his room and out of the house. Sasha’s father tells him that becoming a Young Pioneer is more important than having a father and to continue on his journey to school and become a Young Pioneer. At school trouble continues to follow Sasha. he is forced to throw a snowball at a boy breaking his glasses, finds trouble with the school bully, and breaks Stalin’s nose. By the end of the day he realizes that the Communist ways are not what he has always believed them to be, and finds a friend in an unlikely place.

Review by Dana Valencia, Oakridge Elem. Media Center
Rating: ★★★★✩ (4 stars)
Interest Level: Grades 4-6

Breaking Stalin’s Nose
Written and Illustrated by Eugene Yelchin
Henry Holt
140 pages
Release Date: September 27, 2011
ISBN: 9780805092165 (hardcover)

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