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Books

What’s In My Ear: Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein

I love love love the Code Name Verity series by Elizabeth Wein! I totally have a photo of the two of us together somewhere but, you know how finding those things goes.

Wait. Hold that thought. I found it!!

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This pic was taken at Children’s Book World in Haverford (cheating on Towne Book Center, shhhhhh) at the release of Rose Under Fire. Signed Hardcover dorky love ya’ll!!

Ahem.

I first read Code Name Verity over a year ago. In fact it was probably more like 2013. A friend at the bookstore turned me on to it and I loved it! CNV is the story of girl pilots during WWII. As I’m a fan of British TV shows like Bletchley Circle which center around female code breakers during the war, CNV was a perfect fit.

There are two main characters in CNV which you grow to love. I’m not going to spoil the ending for you but let’s just say that I was powerfully moved after finishing Verity and couldn’t bring myself to read the companion book.  I finally FINALLY in April 2015 thought I was ready to read Rose Under Fire. And let me tell you something; I was also reading Corrie Ten Boom’s The Hiding Place at the same time, which I don’t advise.  The atrocities during WWII never. cease. to amaze. me.  Hitler and his minions were the worst of the worst.

Rose Under Fire brings pilot Maddie from CNV and introduces you to Rose Moyer Justice the heroine you will grow to love.

Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein

RUF has won all kinds of awards and for good reason too. If you want kids to learn about the war and the German occupation, give them this to read. Dr. Wein completely researches her facts so while this is fiction, the facts will teach you more than you’ll ever learn in History class (sorry to my 9th grade History teacher) or a boring autobiography. I kinda feel like if Anne Frank had published her diary of her internment at a concentration camp, it would probably be the only other autobiography I would read.

I cannot tell you any more about RUF because I will give it all away. It’s so good. I laughed, I cried, I cursed.  You will too.

 

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Books

#AtoZChallenge – N Number the Stars

Thank you for joining me for N day. Today let’s talk about Number the Stars by Lois Lowry. Is there anyone who doesn’t love this beautiful little book?

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

As you can see, Bailey, my pooch, loves the book too!

Ten-year-old Annemarie Johansen and her best friend Ellen Rosen often think of life before the war. It’s now 1943 and their life in Copenhagen is filled with school, food shortages, and the Nazi soldiers marching through town. When the Jews of Denmark are “relocated,” Ellen moves in with the Johansens and pretends to be one of the family. Soon Annemarie is asked to go on a dangerous mission to save Ellen’s life.

There are so many great stories of regular people caring for Jews who were brutalized during the war. Here’s one young people can understand and relate to. Lowry is an expert at telling stories from a kids’ perspective.

Have you read this gem?

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Adult Fiction Books

SPOTLIGHT: The Color of Courage– A Boy at War: The World War II Diary of Julian Kulski

If there is going to be a war, I do not want to miss it. So writes Julian Kulski a few days before WWII begins, in this remarkable diary of a boy at war from ages 10 to 16. As the war unfolds through his eyes, we are privileged to meet an inspirational soul of indomitable will, courage and compassion. At age 12 Kulski is recruited as a soldier in the clandestine Underground Army by his Boy Scout leader, and at age 13 enters the Warsaw Ghetto on a secret mission. Arrested by the Gestapo at age 14 and sentenced to Auschwitz, he is rescued and joins the commandos. At age 15, Kulski fights in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. He ends the war as a German POW, finally risking a dash for freedom onto an American truck instead of waiting for Soviet liberation. “

Yeah. So what were you doing when you were 12? Me? Singing along with The Jackson 5 or at Girl Scout Camp or at band camp.  It’s hard to imagine a 12 year old who wants to go to war, right?

JulianKulski1944_age15uniform

Look at that face! Ok so he’s not 12 anymore but he’s still very young. Too young to fight in a war.

World War II veteran, international architect, and author Julian Kulski’s book, The Color of Courage—A Boy At War: The World War II Diary of Julian Kulski, will be published by Aquila Polonica on Veterans Day, November 11, 2014.

“I can’t say I really want to die,” 12-year-old Julian Kulski writes, “but I can see now that there are times when one has to be prepared to do just that.”

The Color of Courage is a rare and vivid day-by-day eyewitness account by a young boy who becomes a man far too soon under the brutal Nazi German occupation of Poland.

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Julian is a 10-year-old Boy Scout when the Germans invade his native Poland to start World War II. At an age when most boys are still playing with toys, Julian begins his own private war against the Germans with small acts of sabotage. At 12, he is recruited into the clandestine Underground Army by his Scoutmaster, and begins training on weapons and military tactics.

By 14, he is holding up German soldiers at gunpoint, has gone on a secret mission into the Warsaw Ghetto to liaise with Jewish resistance leaders, is captured by the Gestapo, beaten and interrogated, sentenced to Auschwitz, rescued, and joins a Commando unit of the Underground Army. At 15, he fights in the Warsaw Uprising, ending the war as a German POW.

The war’s end brings physical freedom but very little peace for the 16-year-old veteran suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). A wise army doctor advises Julian to write down his experiences to help lessen the psychological and emotional burdens of the war. The Color of Courage is the result.

I know, right? Here’s a book trailer to pique your interest even more:

I think this will make the perfect holiday gift for the war hero in your life.

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Blogging from A to Z Challenge Books

#AtoZChallenge: N-Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

Hi and Welcome Back!

A to Z challenge button

Today’s letter is N

and I’m not going to say anything other than

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

A must read for when it comes to the Holocaust.

Please come back next time for the letter

O