Are you a teacher or librarian or know a youngster who’d like a shot at a hundred bucks? If so, I’m kicking off a contest and a promotion; a contest for young people, and a promotion for librarians and teachers. It also offers teachers, homeschoolers and librarians a chance to use the contest to add interest to a class or library program. How does it work?

I want to offer a $100 prize for the young person who best answers the discussion questions below on my new release “Beyond the Smoke” from BJU Press and enters by sending them to me through the email form on my website (http://www.terryburns.net/). For the promotion I want to offer a $100 prize to the librarian or teacher who shelves my book and another $100 to the organization they work for and the entry is simply for the librarian to give me the link to the catalog where it is located ( I keep the links on my site) and the teacher just a short comment. Both can also be pasted into the email form on the site and the name will be drawn in 90 days. The only entry fee is getting a copy of the book at http://www.bjupress.com/product/261057?path=1672 , at bookstores after the first of the year, or at your local library.

There was no such thing as a teenager before World War II. Kids were expected to go to work on the family farm or in the family store as soon as they got whatever education they were going to get which often was the equivalent of today’s middle school or even less. The purpose of this book is to make history come alive by getting young people to wonder how they would fare if they had been forced to live in this environment.

Discussion questions:

Think of the movie “Back to the Future,” if you knew you were going to be transported back to the frontier in the late 1800’s what would you do to prepare? What would you want in your backpack to take with you?

Today young people have a “growing up period” they didn’t used to have. They aren’t prosecuted in their early teens for certain things, yet in the days of this book a youngster old enough to kill a man faced the same consequences as an adult. What are the consequences of this change of attitude, good and bad?

These young people were faced with a number of challenges? What would you have done differently? What are some of the things young people have to face today that they did not have to face then?

What careers do you think were open to young people in this time period, including Native Americans?

The larger than life Texas Ranger dispensed justice with a firm hand. In many places the only law was what they brought with them. What actions did he take that would not be allowed today? How do you feel about the difference?

The bright and shining period in history in England was King Arthur and the Roundtable, the days of Camelot. It has been said that that period for the United States was the settlement of the frontier and the days of the old west. Do you feel that is true? If it is do you feel young people today do not know much about this period nor have much interest in it? Why?

Would you like to see more books about what life for a young person who is a teen today might have been like in earlier years?