After more than 50 years of keeping his story to himself, Isaac Millman reveals his personal experience as a child in France during World War II--and how his life was changed forever--in spare prose, vivid composite paintings, and family photos that survived the war.After more than 50 years of keeping his story to himself, Isaac Millman reveals his personal experience as a child in France during World War II--and how his life was changed forever--in spare prose, vivid composite paintings, and family photos that survived the war.Read Less
Although this subject is difficult for middleschool children, it's one that MUST be tackled if the truth is to be told. It traces the life of a young Jewish boy in France before, during and after WWII. Isaac loses his father and mother but because of the care given him by complete strangers, is able to survive the German destruction of his people in Europe. He later pieces together his history to share with others.
The book is factual but covers this subject from a child's perspective, with actual photos of his family, and copies of documents that will help others understand what actually happened. It witnesses to the great bravery of the French (Christian and Jewish alike) who protected others with their own lives. The book is a tribute to the many Jews who didn't make it and the stamina, perception and forgiveness shown by one who did.
Publishers Weekly, 2005-11-21 Millman (the Moses series) here tells his own story: during the Nazi occupation of France, he was a hidden child. Millman is the surname of the American family that adopted the author/artist after the war; growing up in Paris, he was Isaac Sztrymfman, the only son of doting Polish Jewish immigrants. Playing pretend battleships with his best friend "was as close as war came to us then. It was a game." When Isaac was seven, Germany invaded France and Papa was arrested. Two years later, the boy and his mother were imprisoned after a thwarted escape attempt. But Mama succeeded in bribing a guard to save Isaac from deportation (she, along with Isaac's father, perished at Auschwitz), setting off a chain of events that led him to a remarkable protector named Hena. Millman's unadorned but carefully detailed writing is beautifully pitched for a middle school audience. The most heart-wrenching moments-a final glimpse of Papa waving through the barbed wire of the internment camp, Mama's tears on Isaac's cheeks as she hands him to the bribed guard, Hena's whispered confidence, "I'm a Jew, too," when she discovers an abandoned Isaac sobbing in front the building that was once his home-are bearable, but barely so. Millman intersperses the text with archival photographs and his own mural-like watercolor montages of the events, as if to demonstrate that history is made up of two currents-those things that can be documented, and those that become the underpinnings of memories, pain, longing and resilience. An extraordinary book and a moving tribute to those who vanished. Ages 10-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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