Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ability to request physical items has been temporarily disabled. Click here to find out how to create lists of items to request later. OverDrive items can still be requested, and other digital resources remain available through the eLibrary site. If you need a library card, register here.

Chester Nez and the unbreakable code : a Navajo code talker's story

by Bruchac, Joseph, 1942-

Format: Print Book 2018
Availability: Available at 12 Libraries 12 of 13 copies
Available (12)
Location Collection Call #
C.C. Mellor Memorial Library Children Non Fiction J 940.545 Bru
Location  C.C. Mellor Memorial Library
 
Collection  Children Non Fiction
 
Call Number  J 940.545 Bru
 
 
CLP - Allegheny Regional Children's Biographies j D810.C88 B77 2018x
Location  CLP - Allegheny Regional
 
Collection  Children's Biographies
 
Call Number  j D810.C88 B77 2018x
 
 
CLP - Homewood Children's Biographies j D810.C88 B77 2018x
Location  CLP - Homewood
 
Collection  Children's Biographies
 
Call Number  j D810.C88 B77 2018x
 
 
CLP - Main Library First Floor Children's Department - Biography j D810.C88 B77 2018x
Location  CLP - Main Library
 
Collection  First Floor Children's Department - Biography
 
Call Number  j D810.C88 B77 2018x
 
 
CLP - Squirrel Hill Children's Biographies j D810.C88 B77 2018x
Location  CLP - Squirrel Hill
 
Collection  Children's Biographies
 
Call Number  j D810.C88 B77 2018x
 
 
Cooper-Siegel Community Library - Sharpsburg Childrens j 940.54 BRU
Location  Cooper-Siegel Community Library - Sharpsburg
 
Collection  Childrens
 
Call Number  j 940.54 BRU
 
 
Dormont Public Library Juvenile Non-Fiction J 92 N49 NEZ
Location  Dormont Public Library
 
Collection  Juvenile Non-Fiction
 
Call Number  J 92 N49 NEZ
 
 
Monroeville Public Library Juvenile Non-fiction J E 940.548 BRUCHAC
Location  Monroeville Public Library
 
Collection  Juvenile Non-fiction
 
Call Number  J E 940.548 BRUCHAC
 
 
Mt. Lebanon Public Library Children's Non-Fiction j 92N NEZ Ami
Location  Mt. Lebanon Public Library
 
Collection  Children's Non-Fiction
 
Call Number  j 92N NEZ Ami
 
 
Northland Public Library Children's Nonfiction J 940.54 B83
Location  Northland Public Library
 
Collection  Children's Nonfiction
 
Call Number  J 940.54 B83
 
 
Penn Hills Library Juvenile Easys E j 940.54 BRU
Location  Penn Hills Library
 
Collection  Juvenile Easys
 
Call Number  E j 940.54 BRU
 
 
Shaler North Hills Library Juvenile Non-Fiction j 940.54 B
Location  Shaler North Hills Library
 
Collection  Juvenile Non-Fiction
 
Call Number  j 940.54 B
 
 
 
Unavailable (1)
Location Collection Status
Moon Township Public Library Easy CHECKED OUT
Location  Moon Township Public Library
 
Collection  Easy
 
Status  CHECKED OUT
 
 
Summary
As a young Navajo boy, Chester Nez had to leave the reservation and attend boarding school, where he was taught that his native language and culture were useless. But Chester refused to give up his heritage. Years later, during World War II, Chesterand other Navajo men like himwas recruited by the US Marines to use the Navajo language to create an unbreakable military code. Suddenly the language he had been told to forget was needed to fight a war. This powerful picture book biography contains backmatter including a timeline and a portion of the Navajo code, and also depicts the life of an original Navajo code talker while capturing the importance of heritage.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "Bruchac distills his extensive knowledge about the Navajo code talkers in this complex biography for young readers. When Betoli is taken to boarding school at the age of eight, his name is changed to Chester, his head shaved, and his language forbidden. Despite his own despair, Chester stays strong and comforts other children when nightmares plague them. This is a story of forced adaptation: Chester learns English and Christian prayers in order to survive, while maintaining his Navajo identity. It is a story of conflict: Chester lends his skills to the very power that fought his people. His work with the U.S. military, developing the code that results in the enemy's defeat, brings him both trauma and honor. The tragic irony of Chester's life may be lost on young readers, but older ones may ask salient questions about a society that forbade Navajo ways until they were useful. Amini-Holmes' striking illustrations bring these contrasts to life, merging both of Chester's lives while keeping them distinctly separate. An author's note adds detail and context.--Chaudhri, Amina Copyright 2018 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Bruchac begins this powerful story of Chester Nez (born Betoli) as he is taken by missionaries from the Navajo reservation to boarding school: "Chester knew he might need to live in the white man's world one day. In that world speaking English was essential, so he worked hard and did well." In 1942, Marine Corps recruiters seek speakers of English and Navajo; Bruchac clearly explains the need for a code that could not be broken by the Japanese, while lightly underscoring the irony of Chester's circumstances: "Suddenly the language he had been told to forget was important." Bruchac movingly draws a parallel between the trauma of indigenous boarding schools and war. Amini-Holmes's paintings capture the nightmarish atmosphere of both: at school, Nez's terror is embodied by red-eyed crows that fly away with locks of his sheared hair, while in his postwar dreams, birds morph into sharks resembling dive bombers. Back matter explores the recognition that code talkers received years after their service, and includes a portion of the Navajo code. Ages 7-9. (Apr.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Nez, Chester.
United States. -- Marine Corps -- Biography.
United States. -- Marine Corps.
Navajo code talkers -- Biography.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Cryptography.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives, American.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Participation, Indian.
Marines -- United States -- Biography.
Navajo Indians -- Biography.
Navajo code talkers.
Cryptography.
Indians of North America -- Biography.
Publisher Chicago, Illinois :2018
Contributors Amini-Holmes, Liz, illustrator.
Language English
Description 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 27 cm
ISBN 9780807500071
0807500070
Other Classic View