Through Eva’s Eyes

Phoebe Eloise Unterman
  • Review
By – September 1, 2011
Through Eva’s Eyes is a pic­ture book based on the expe­ri­ences of the young author’s grand­moth­er, Eva K. Unter­man, in the Lodz Ghet­to and after­ward, in var­i­ous con­cen­tra­tion camps. The author, Phoebe Eloise Unter­man, began writ­ing and illus­trat­ing the book when she was 13 years old, when she sub­mit­ted it to the Kids-In-Print” con­test, where it won a Gold Award in 2006. After a few years of rewrit­ing and redraw­ing, Land­mark House books pub­lished her impres­sive sto­ry. She has a gen­uine abil­i­ty to dis­cuss his­to­ry in a way that young peo­ple can relate to, and the illus­tra­tions cre­ative­ly depict emo­tions expe­ri­enced by many Jew­ish chil­dren through­out Nazi occu­pied Europe. The author presents her grandmother’s child­hood per­spec­tive from age 6 to age 12: that of hav­ing a hap­py child­hood destroyed by war and per­se­cu­tion until her fam­i­ly was final­ly lib­er­at­ed by the Russ­ian army. She writes: The ter­ri­fy­ing Ger­man occu­pa­tion of Lodz brought much stress and mis­ery to all Jew­ish fam­i­lies. Even as a child, I real­ized that we were being stripped of our rights.”. The writ­ing is very clear and the sto­ry is very mov­ing and appro­pri­ate for chil­dren from about fourth grade and up. It is a won­der­ful addi­tion to pic­ture books about the Holo­caust and has great poten­tial to moti­vate young peo­ple to take stands against prej­u­dice. Order­ing infor­ma­tion can be found at the author’s web­site, www​.throughevaseyes​.com. For ages 10 – 14.
Nathan Weissler is a senior in high school and lives in Chevy Chase, MD with his fam­i­ly. He has been writ­ing reviews for Jew­ish Book World for two years. Nathan loves to read, espe­cial­ly books relat­ed to Judaism and history.

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