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Mar 24

Series Saturday:

Posted on March 24, 2017 at 12:53 PM by Lindsey Kult


If you have an elementary school aged child (2nd to 4th grade reading level) you probably have already heard of this Series Saturday. It's Lauren Tarshis's "I Survived" series! These books are very popular historical fiction books. Teachers love to use them to get their students interested in history and as a learning tool.


Historical fiction, Junior Fiction, Adventure/Action, Based on True Event

Location in Library: 

Junior Fiction, J TARSHIS

Meet the Characters:

Each book has a new protagonist. The books span from the "Destruction of Pompeii" to the 2011 Joplin tornado with many of the books tackling events in the 1900's. The books are in third person and do a great job of reading like the narrator is a 10 year old - one book talked about how "old" the main character's aunt was (she was 22). The main characters are relateable for elementary students and the fear and excitement they experience is so well worded (but not in a way that will keep your young ones up at night) that your children will be sucked in!

Number in Series:

There are currently 14 books in the series and a 15th is coming out this year! These books do not have to be read in a certain order, as they have different protagonists and take place around the world and at various times in history.

  • I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912
  • I Survived the Shark Attacks of 1916
  • I Survived Hurricane Katrina, 2005
  • I Survived the Bombing of Pearl Harbor, 1941
  • I Survived the San Francisco Earthquake, 1906
  • I Survived the Attacks of September 11th, 2001
  • I Survived the Battle of Gettysburg, 1863
  • I Survived the Japanese Tsunami, 2011
  • I Survived the Nazi Invasion, 1944
  • I Survived the Destruction of Pompeii, AD 79
  • I Survived the Great Chicago Fire, 1871
  • I Survived the Joplin Tornado, 2011
  • I Survived the Hindenburg Disaster, 1937
  • I Survived the Eruption of Mount St. Helens, 1980
Final Word:

These books are great for elementary aged children! Even if they're not interested in history, these books do not force them to process facts like a textbook. Instead, your child will learn about the event and time in history through the descriptions and behavior of the characters. At the end of each book there is a list of facts that were not included in the actual story; but by the end of the book your child will most likely want to read those facts anyway! Even though these books are about deadly events and tragedies, the characters themselves do not see bodies or violence. In some books, the characters are not in the middle of the historic event - like in the 9/11 book, the boy was not in Twin Towers during the attack - but they still provide excellent detail and are filled with action!