Warriors in the Crossfire

Young Adult Historical Novel
ISBN #1590786610

Warriors in the Crossfire looks at one boy’s experience of impending war – war fought by two nations, Japan and the U.S. – on the Pacific island of Saipan. The island’s families are caught in the crossfire of invasion. In order to survive, Joseph, the main character, must find a new understanding of being a warrior.

This novel provides a historical perspective on American involvement in the Pacific front during WWII, an aspect of American history seldom represented in children’s literature.

Warriors addresses important themes regarding survival of heart and spirit when family and culture are under attack. The novel is created through narrative but also includes verse and kanji, Japanese elements of writing.


Quote by Ellen Levine, award-winning author of fiction and nonfiction books for children, including: Catch a Tiger By the Toe, a Booklist Top 10 Historical Fiction for Youth, and Henry's Freedom Box, a Caldecott honor book:

"Nancy Bo Flood reveals for us a world rarely spotlighted – the “other side” of the story of the World War II battle for Saipan. She tells a riveting tale, never skirting tough issues of mixed loyalties, if and when to ignore authority, and family ties that bind or don’t. This is history that is gripping, enlightening and engaging."

Quote by author Janet Fox, when asked what books she is an evangelist for:

"...Nancy Bo Flood's Warriors in the Crossfire – the cover does not express what is going on inside that magnificent little book."

New review from youngest reader: 6-year old Liam Weil met with me in Hawaii to say:

"I read all of Warriors in the Crossfire and the best part was when the family was safe in the caves. Some parts were scary."

Liam's grandmother, the late Nancy Weil, who fought long and hard against cancer, was the first person to read the rough first pages of Warriors and encourage me to keep writing. "This story needs to be told," she nodded. Fifteen years later her grandson is reading those same pages.

"Nancy Bo Flood's novel casts a bright light on one of the forgotten shadows of World War II, the near total devastation of Saipan and the native people who lived there. Joseph's story forces us to pay attention, to see war itself as an event that affects more than the opposing forces and illuminates its darkest corners." -Kathi Appelt, author of many award-winning books for children, her latest, The Underneath, finalist, the National Book Award, Newbery Honor Book, ALA

"Having researched and written four books about World War II in the Pacific, I tend to be a bit harsh on any fictional attempt to recreate what happened during those terrible times. However, I have to say that I like this book, simply because it was so real. The characters in this book reminded me of people I knew during my years in the islands; people who lived before and during the fighting, and who had rebuilt their islands and their lives afterwords. The events that Nancy Flood creates in her novel could have happened. I would go so far as to say they did happen even if the names are fictional. Hollywood should make a movie out this." -Bruce M. Petty, author of Saipan: Oral Histories of the Pacific War.

Warriors in the Crossfire by Nancy Bo Flood - YA Historical Novel
Buy an electronic version of Warriors in the Crossfire at Namelos.com


Download Teacher's Guide / Discussion Questions (Word Doc)



Interviews with Nancy



  1. Jody Cosson on February 8, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    Beautiful book. I look forward to reading it. Jody

  2. Megan Magraw on April 24, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    I may not be a “young adult” (or am I??), but I LOVE this book. I will keep one copy selfishly for myself, to read and re-read… and I will buy multiple copies as gifts for friends and family. Thank you for writing this book !!!

  3. Danielle Nelson on August 15, 2010 at 11:34 am

    I can’t wait to use this book in my classroom for a Liturature study! I can already tell that based on my classroom dynamics and demographics, my students will eat up this book!

  4. leo bucksbaum on October 14, 2010 at 6:11 pm

    this book is awesome

  5. Liz on October 16, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Once you read it, you don’t wanna STOP! LOVE this book!

  6. Keiffer Jacobs on January 18, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    This book was an amazing read and i enjoyed it very much.

  7. Sally Whitworth Holiday on February 4, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    I can’t wait to share this book with my students. Along with many daditional tales of saipan. you inspire me.

  8. Edwards Josh on May 11, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    this was the best book i have ever read so far.

  9. Lauren Chadwick on August 27, 2011 at 5:09 am

    This was a required reading in Mrs. Arriola’s Pacific Lit class here at NMC, Saipan.

    I moved here to Saipan just over a year ago. I have fallen in love with this island- but most of all have fallen in love with its past. The land here has breath of its own, given to it from all the many kinds of people who have come here, left here, and stayed here forever.

    This book was the opening to my passion for wanting to know more and more about the culture and history. Thank you for this read!! I couldnt put it down! I read the whole thing in one day of non stop reading! Thank you, thank you, thank you!