If you’re looking for a fun way to get your kid a little more interested in Maryland history, add “Calvert the Raven in The Battle of Baltimore” to your home library.
The story, by Jonathon Scott Fuqua, who has called Baltimore home for 22 years, is about a boy named Daniel who writes a truly appalling paper for school about the Battle of 1812, on the top of which his teacher has penned one word: “Terrible.” As Daniel walks home from school worrying about what his parents will say, down flies a talking raven named Calvert, who time-travels with Daniel (who is suddenly small enough to ride on the bird’s back) to Baltimore harbor as the Redcoats and Americans are in the midst of the big fight.
Daniel watches the grim scene unfold throughout the afternoon and into the night. And, yes, in the morning he spies Francis Scott Key looking toward Fort McHenry and noting with joy that the flag is still there.
Calvert returns Daniel to the sidewalk — where no time has actually passed — and Daniel eagerly heads home, excited to share what he’s learned about Baltimore history.
Each spread in the book includes a beautiful colorful illustration, also by Fuqua.
Calvert the Raven in The Battle of Baltimore
$7.99 paperback and e-editions
For children in grades 3-6
Available at The Ivy Bookshop, the Fort McHenry gift shop, major bookstores and amazon.com.