Kim is back with another video review! This time it is What the Night Sings by Vesper Stamper. As you will see, she loved it!
Title: What the Night Sings
Author: Vesper Stamper
Published: February 20, 2018
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4.5 stars
After losing her family and everything she knew in the Nazi concentration camps, Gerta is finally liberated, only to find herself completely alone. Without her Papa, her music, or even her true identity, she must move past the task of surviving and onto living her life. In the displaced persons camp where she is staying, Gerta meets Lev, a fellow teen survivor who she just might be falling for, despite her feelings for someone else. With a newfound Jewish identity she never knew she had, and a return to the life of music she thought she lost forever, Gerta must choose how to build a new future.
Kim’s Video Review:
Author: Claire Huchet Bishop
Published: March 30th 1978
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 5 stars
During the German occupation of France, twenty French children were brought to a refuge in the mountains. One day a young man came to their school with a request: Could they take in, and hide, ten Jewish refugee children? Sister Gabriel spoke up. “The Nazis are looking for those children. If we take them we must never let on they are here. Do you understand?” Of course the children understood—but how would they hide them if the Nazis came?
I first had this book read to me all the way back in 5th grade. I loved it then and when I found it on sale at Book Outlet, I got myself a copy, my mother in law a copy, my mom a copy . . . Hey this book will make an awesome Christmas gift for the nieces and nephews this year! Sweet! It’s one of those books that sticks with you. It’s a children’s book, but handles the mature topics of the Holocaust and Nazis in a way that kids will safely understand.
The kids at the school handled the German soldiers better than many others did during WW2. Somehow, they took some of the most annoying kid qualities and twisted them into heroic actions. I have nothing but good things to say about Twenty and Ten and I absolutely recommend it to everyone, especially to any kid, whether they like to read or not. This would be such a great resource for teachers in their classrooms. In a world that shies away from teaching the Holocaust, this is a great foundation for the younger kids to have in preparation for later more mature lessons and conversations.
Author: Antonio Iturbe
Published: October 10, 2017
Reviewed By: Kim
XXX’s Rating: 5 Stars
Description from Amazon:
Based on the experience of real-life Auschwitz prisoner Dita Kraus, this is the incredible story of a girl who risked her life to keep the magic of books alive during the Holocaust. Fourteen-year-old Dita is one of the many imprisoned by the Nazis at Auschwitz. Taken, along with her mother and father, from the Terezín ghetto in Prague, Dita is adjusting to the constant terror that is life in the camp. When Jewish leader Freddy Hirsch asks Dita to take charge of the eight precious volumes the prisoners have managed to sneak past the guards, she agrees. And so Dita becomes the librarian of Auschwitz. Out of one of the darkest chapters of human history comes this extraordinary story of courage and hope.
First book of 2018!!! And why I decided to pick a book that would pull my heart out of my chest and stomp on it, I’ll never know! I got this book for Christmas and I couldn’t wait to pick it up. The cover is gorgeous, its based on a true story, and its all about books. As much as I’ve studied the Holocaust and Auschwitz, I don’t think I’ve ever read about the family camp or the children’s school. To be honest, I don’t think I’ve read an account of day to day life in Auschwitz, other than the constant stream into the gas chambers. This book does a great job of capturing the feelings of the prisoners. In other accounts, it seems that all you can feel is the fear and despair. But in The Librarian, there’s a sense of hope that never seems to be extinguished.
Dr. Mengele could easily fit in as the villain in any horror story and be completely believable and terror-inducing. Yet Dita refuses to be cowed. Fredy, instead of looking out for his own interests and well-being like most leaders of that time did, successfully ran a school for hundreds of kids, in the middle of the most deadly extermination camp the Nazis ever set up! How our youth of today manage to “survive” in this world of mean, offensive people, I’ll never know! *cough*sarcasm*cough*
There were so many feelings in this book! I was inspired, heartbroken, excited, scared, frustrated, angry . . . I thought I was going to burst. This is another fiction book that reads like non-fiction. Iturbe researched extensively and spent a lot of time with Dita before writing. The Postscript was actually my favorite part of the whole book because it was wonderful to hear about what kind of person Dita grew up to be. Pretty sure she is my new hero and will remain in that position forever!
I would save this for slightly older teens, keep it in high school classrooms and libraries. But every single high school history teacher should have this book on their shelves. I absolutely recommend this to anyone who enjoys historical fiction, history, or just an inspiring story. I would also suggest that every single high schooler read this book. An easy 5 stars! “Books are extremely dangerous; they make people think.”[Top]