Books for Kids

Junior Library
Guild picks
To order personalized copies at 15% off retail, email michaeltougias@yahoo.com. Prices (before shipping) are as follows:
Attacked (hardcover) $17; Finest Hours (hardcover) $16; Blizzard (hardcover) $17; Storm (softcover) $6.80. Set is $56.90.

In 1942 the Downs family, together with 8-year-old Sonny and 11-year-old Lucille, were aboard a freighter ship returning from South America when they sailed into the crosshairs of a German submarine lying in wait in the Gulf of Mexico. What ensues is a story of survival and perseverance, both for the family and the German sailors.

"This exciting, highly readable story of survival deserves a place on most library shelves. Perfect for young history buffs and older fans of the 'I Survived' series." -- School Library Journal

"Quotes from letters and diaries evoke the historical era. A well-researched account of one American family during a little-known episode of World War II." -- Kirkus Reviews

"After hours of dehydration, hypothermia, and shark threats, the survivors were sighted by plane and rescued by smaller craft . . . in this true survival story that judiciously carries forward beyond the relief of the rescue. The peril facing two children lost at sea is convincingly conveyed, and the lasting effect on their family life is equally sobering." -- The Bulletin for Children's Literature

A New York Times best-selling book, this is the story of a small contingent of Coast Guardsmen who ventured into an epic storm to rescue sailors from a ship that had broken in half. Readers learn why the crew of four continued toward the stricken ship despite knowing they may not return. In 2016 Disney unveiled a full-length film of the same name based on the book.

“This poignant history should be an easy sell to readers of adventure, seafaring, or rescue stories.” ―School Library Journal

“The Finest Hours is a touching account, a sensitive rendering of what might be called four indescribably chaotic conditions. . . . Tougias and Sherman never sensationalize, never go beyond the facts, and yet capture all the pain, physical and emotional, of the survivors and their families.” ―Providence Journal

“This book captures the wit, grit and sacrifice of Coasties and their boats.” ―Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Tougias and Sherman reach their peak of tension in the sink-or-swim moments when mariners abandoned ship and chanced their lives on their rescuers' skill and bravery . . .excellent.” ―Booklist

“Nearly 57 years later, it's a breathtaking story that still defies the imagination.” ―Cape Cod Chronicle

What happens when a Coast Guard  ship gets lost in a howling nor'easter storm and needs help? This nonfiction book chronicles the harrowing journey between Captain Quirk and the Coast Guard as they struggled in the holds of an epic storm forever known as the Blizzard of '78. It's an spine-tingling tale of heroism and bravery at sea. 

"Reads like a thriller, suspenseful and ultimately tragic, effectively capturing the desperate situations of the three Coast Guard boats that were dispatched to aid a supposedly sinking tanker. . . Riveting."―Kirkus Reviews

"Readers who love disaster tales―and want to feel like they're experiencing them firsthand―will find this a compelling, well-sourced read."―Booklist

"Quotes from eyewitnesses involved with the rescue attempts, friends, and transcripts of radio transmissions tell the story of what was ultimately a deadly rescue mission. The bravery of Frank Quirk, the captain of the Can Do, along with that of crew member Charlie Bucko, takes center stage.'―School Library Journal

Far offshore, a sailboat is torn apart by a tremendous -- and unforecasted -- storm. This is a story of heroism (the captain, despite being seriously injured and near death, kept his two shipmates alive) and also of sheer terror. Cast adrift in the angry seas, the men seem to have little chance of survival. The rescue effort has its own share of life-threatening risks. 

“The riveting, meticulously researched story tells the true-life tale of an incredible rescue” -- New York Post

"Tougias spins a marvelous and terrifying yarn....this is a breathtaking book." -- Los Angeles Times

"A suspenseful, tautly rendered story that leaves readers breathless but well-satisfied." -- Kirkus

“A magnificent culmination of what-ifs with such detail as to inspire reverence for the human spirit. Tougias’ use of present tense is ingenious, this is an armchair riptide of the reading experience.” -- South Coast Magazine

"Michael Tougias has done it again, this time delivering an edge-of-your-seat chronicle of what happens when a sailboat goes up against a fierce storm in the heart of the Gulf Stream." -- The Providence Journal

“Readers of true-life adventures, especially those involving disaster and rescue at sea, should find this one very much to their liking.” -- Booklist

"Deserves a place as a classic survival at sea."  -- The Boston Globe