Times of the Sixties

Story of Countdown

The Lives, Stresses, and People of the Sixties



The Cuban Missile Crisis is commencing and the fight between the USA and the ussr is wrapping up. Countdown by Deborah Wiles takes place in the sixties in Pearl Harbor, Frannie Chapman is involved in many problems that revolve around the missile crisis.

One of the main problems is how the Cuban Missile Crisis effects Frannie and the people around her. Her uncle really wants to protect everybody because he lost somebody he loves but he really embarrases Frannie while he does that. The second problem is Frannie’s dad is in the army so he has to go on trips for long periods of time. This affects Frannie because she will really miss him and also Frannie’s mom gets very stressed because she has to take care of Frannie, Drew her brother, and Jo Ellen her sister. It is very hard to take care of these three kids by herself leaving Frannie to take care of herself most of the time.

At the end, the climax is when Frannie and her best friend Margie get in a fight and Frannie has to decide if she wants to help her Best friend or get revenge for embarrassing her and saying many cruel things. She makes the right decision to help her but gets really hurt doing so and almost dies. After everything it turns out that Cuba isn’t go to bomb the U.S.A and Frannie’s and Margie’s friendship dissolves. The book shows how hard life some peoples lives are and you fill like yours is pretty good.

The Mannered Frannie

Frannie Chapman is the main character in my story Countdown. She is very smart and likes to know everything. When she gets nervous she acts like a total fool. When she is mad she usually cries in her bed and doesn't want to talk to anyone. She is very respectful to everybody even if they are younger than she. She gets really mad when you don’t respect her or when you don’t give her a chance to do something. For example when her teacher doesn't pick her to answer she gets really mad and doesn't want to talk to her teacher. On page 237 Frannie’s best friend said “What’s wrong with your retarded uncle” and Frannie got really mad and they started to fight and Margie left the party. To me Frannie is a really good person and will treat anybody really well.

The Big Changes



1.This is a picture of John F Kennedy

making his speech about the

missile crisis. This is a turning

point because when he made

this speech it made people more

relaxed and made people not

worry about the missile crisis.


2.This picture is a picture of an underground safe house. This is a big turning

point in my book because when people started making safe houses for

the missile crisis many families were stressed out and had very hard times.

This little house is made to keep people safe from missiles or bomb.



3.This was a big turning point in my book because

when this happened everybody was so relieved

and there was no more stresses. After the blockade

happened Frannie's life went back to normal

and everything was perfect again.

The Facts


  1. Kids used to watch movies to learn what to do if there was a bomb attack. Here is a quote that will prove my point, “tot the turtle says always duck down when you see the bright flash. Pg 30
  2. Families made safe houses so when the bomb came they would be protected . Here is a example of my thought “Mama and our uncle are making a safe house underground” pg 127
  3. people in the army are always at their base ready for anything. I found this by reading “everything has been going crazy since daddy left” pg 112
  4. Sirens going off for practice if a real bomb happened. I thought this when read “I heard the loud sound and ran inside before anything can happen” pg 47

Unforgettable Times



August 12 1961 Berlin wall built

May 3 1972 the Sears Tower was built

November 9 1989 Berlin Wall falls

April 3 1992 official end of cold war

September 11 2001 terrorist attack on world trade center in New York

July 27 2012 the Olympics start in London