Aaron Seth is an eleven-year-old who was inspired by the story of his grandfather’s Holocaust experience and survival to write this poetic book so that this story of suffering and hope will live for yet another generation and will continue to inspire others. Written in free-verse style with emotion and deeply felt narrative flow and with a symbolic overlay, and accompanied by evocative sketch-like illustrations, the story focuses on the hope that one human being can share with another even through the darkest of times. It doesn’t delve deeply into character development but it highlights courage and sensitivity while not making light of the suffering and horrors of the time.
A number of the sentences in the book are written in German and they contain some mistakes. They are all translated into English within the body of the text so that all readers can understand content and context without a break in the storyline.
A list of discussion points and questions to ponder follow the narrative. Readers ages 10 – 16 will respond to this short, hopeful tale which is filled with quiet emotion and is written by one of their own generation with sensitivity and love.
Michal Hoschander Malen is the editor of Jewish Book Council’s young adult and children’s book reviews. A former librarian, she has lectured on topics relating to literacy, run book clubs, and loves to read aloud to her grandchildren.