Children’s

Pieces of the Past: The Holo­caust Diary of Rose Rabinowitz

Car­ol Matas
  • Review
September 12, 2013
Who is Rose Rabi­nowitz? The young war orphan lives in Cana­da now, and she’s try­ing to start over with a new fam­i­ly and new friends. But half of her is still Rozia, still back in Poland with her real fam­i­ly, the fam­i­ly she lost in the long, ter­ri­ble years of World War II. Rose can’t bring her­self to talk about it at all, but when her fos­ter father gives her a blank diary, writ­ing about her past seems to help. The nar- rative moves back and forth between Rose’s night­mar­ish mem­o­ries and her attempt to adjust to life in Cana­da. The author does a nice job of con­vey­ing the hor­ror of the war and the sig­nif­i­cant dif­fi­cul­ties of begin­ning anew with­out gloss­ing over the real­i­ty. The nar­ra­tive is told sim­ply and mov­ing­ly, and the char­ac­ters are believ­able and well-drawn. Appro­pri­ate­ly for the young read­ing audi­ence, in spite of the weighty sub­ject mat­ter, read­ers are left feel­ing hope­ful for the resilient Rose. Append­ed are: a his­tor­i­cal note, black and white pic­tures of the Holo­caust, a reprint of a Cana­di­an news­pa­per which car­ried the sto­ry about the orphans arriv­ing in Cana­da, a fac­sim­i­le of a doc­u­ment in-lieu of pass­port” as the orphans had no iden­ti­ty papers, and a map of 1944 Poland. Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 9 – 14

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