Books to Commemorate Anzac Day - Renaissance Australia
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Books to Commemorate Anzac Day

By: Jovana Cupac

April 25th marks a special day for Australians and New Zealanders, ANZAC Day. A day of remembrance to honour the veterans who served and sacrificed their lives in military action during World War 1. ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps and these soldiers are still today remembered for their bravery and fighting spirit.

Why do we commemorate ANZAC Day?

Britain declared war in August 1914, Australia had only been federated for 13 years at this stage and the federal government saw entering the war as an opportunity to cement the country’s place on the world stage, creating a reputation of determination and loyalty to the Commonwealth.

On the 25th April 1915, Australian and New Zealand troops landed on the beaches of Gallipoli with the objective to capture Constantinople, the capital of the Ottoman Empire. With great determination and planned intentions to knock Turkish defenders out of the war quickly, Australia was met with well-prepared Turkish forces, turning the expedition into eight months of desperate fighting. At the end of 1915, soldiers were evacuated from the Gallipoli peninsular with more than 8,000 deaths.

Although there was no military victory, it left Australian & New Zealand soldiers a powerful legacy, as they had displayed great courage, mateship and endurance. This is now referred to as the ‘Anzac Legend’.

How do we recognise this today?

More than a hundred years on, we still come together on April 25th to recognise and remember the ANZACS. Unfortunately, this year will be a little different – we will be coming together in spirit, rather than person. In these uncertain times, services and marches have been cancelled, but this will not dampen our spirits! Australians are being encouraged to wake up early on Anzac Day and at 6am, stand at the end of driveways, on the balcony or in the loungeroom, light a candle and hold a minute of silence to honour the those who lost their lives in war and those who still proudly serve our country today. Be a part of this special moment remembering the ANZACs.

Renaissance Accelerated Reader Anzac Day Book Suggestions:

  1. The Donkey of Gallipoli: A True Story of Courage in World War I
    By Mark Greenwood | ATOS Book Level: 4.9
    Two unlikely heroes rescue hundreds of men wounded in war in a poignant picture book based on a true tale of World War I.
  1. Midnight: A True Story of Loyalty in World War I
    By Mark Greenwood | ATOS Book Level: 2.9
    This book contains the story of a coal black horse named Midnight and how her owner raised her and took her to war and, after four months of separation, they fought in the charge of Beersheba.
  1. The World Collides: The Battle of Gallipoli
    By Terri Dougherty | ATOS Book Level 4.9
    This book describes events that happened before, during, and after the Battle of Gallipoli, including key players, weapons, and battle tactics.
  1. The Silver Donkey
    By Sonya Hartnett | ATOS Book Level: 5.0
    In France during World War I, four French children learn about honesty, loyalty, and courage from an English army deserter who tells them a series of stories related to his small, silver donkey charm.
  1. World War I: 1914-1916–A Terrible New Warfare Begins –
    By Jane H Gould | ATOS Book Level | 6.5
    This book follows the events of the first few years of World War I.