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Books on War

By 49thShelf
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Our resident children's librarian, Julie Booker, shares books introduce younger readers to the realities of war.
Still at War

Still at War

edition:Paperback
also available: eBook

The war is over, but Ellen's secret still haunts her in this tense sequel toKeeping Secrets.

Ellen is now thirteen, living in an upstairs flat with her parents in Morpeth, England. In the aftermath of World War II, many of her neighbours mistrust the German prisoners of war who still live among them, and resent the POWs for taking scarce jobs away.

In Keeping Secrets, Ellen helped a German POW escape. Now she worries that he may never have gotten away, and is still in Morpeth. What if her neighbou …

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The Sky Is Falling

The Sky Is Falling

edition:Paperback
also available: Paperback Paperback
tagged :

It is the summer of 1940, and all of England fears an invasion by Hitler’s army. Norah lies in bed listening to the anxious voices of her parents downstairs.

Then Norah is told that she and her brother, Gavin, are being sent to Canada. The voyage across the ocean is exciting, but at the end of it Norah is miserable. The rich woman who takes them in prefers Gavin to her, the children at school taunt her, and as the news from England becomes worse, she longs for home.

As Norah begins to make frie …

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Keeping Secrets

Keeping Secrets

edition:eBook
also available: Paperback

During WWII, a young girl learns a lesson about humanity and kindness that extends past enemy lines.

Ellen's life changes dramatically as the effects of war reach the British countryside where she lives. Rationing food and dealing with constant air raids is awful... but things get even worse when her beloved father gets injured and is taken to the hospital in another town. Ellen is left alone so that her mother can take care of him, and has to make very big decisions for a young girl. When a bom …

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Hana's Suitcase

Hana's Suitcase

edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
tagged : holocaust

In March 2000, a suitcase arrived at a children's Holocaust education center in Tokyo, Japan from the Auschwitz museum in Germany. Fumiko Ishioka, the center's curator, was captivated by the writing on the outside that identified its owner: "Hana Brady, May 16, 1931, Waisenkind (the German word for orphan)." Children visiting the center were full of questions. Who was Hana Brady? Where did she come from? What was she like? What happened to her? Inspired by their curiosity and her own need to kno …

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And in the Morning

And in the Morning

edition:Paperback
also available: Paperback Paperback Hardcover

In this novel by John Wilson, Jim Hay is fifteen, thinks war is a glorious adventure and cannot wait for his turn to fight. But as his father boldly marches off to battle in August, 1914, Jim must be content to record his thoughts and dreams in his journal. Gradually, Jim's simple life begins to unravel. His father is killed in action, his mother suffers a breakdown, and when he does at last join up, it is as much to find a refuge as it is to seek glory. What Jim discovers in the trenches of Fra …

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Shattered

Shattered

edition:Paperback
tagged :

Fifteen-year-old Ian must complete community volunteer service to pass social studies. Choosing to work at “The Club” sounds like fun, until he arrives at what turns out to be a soup kitchen for the homeless. It is here that he meets Sarge, the pipe-wielding homeless man who saved Ian from a near-mugging. His real name is Jacques, and he was a soldier in the Canadian Armed Forces. His last tour of duty was as a peacekeeper stationed in Rwanda, an African nation Ian knows little about. What h …

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Good-bye Marianne

Good-bye Marianne

A Story of Growing Up in Nazi Germany
edition:Paperback
also available: Paperback

A heartbreaking story of loss and love.

As autumn turns toward winter in 1938 Berlin, life for Marianne Kohn, a young Jewish girl, begins to crumble. First there was the burning of the neighbourhood shops. Then her father, a mild-mannered bookseller, must leave the family and go into hiding. No longer allowed to go to school or even sit in a café, Marianne’s only comfort is her beloved mother. Things are bad, but could they get even worse? Based on true events, this fictional account of hatred …

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Remember Me

Remember Me

A Search for Refuge in Wartime Britain
edition:Paperback
tagged : holocaust, europe

Young Marianne is one of the lucky ones. She has escaped on one of the first kindertransporte organized to take Jewish children out of Germany to safety in Britain.

At first Marianne is desperate. She does not speak English, she is not welcome in her sponsors’ home, and, most of all, she misses her mother terribly. As the months pass, she realizes that she cannot control the circumstances around her. She must rely on herself if she is to survive.

In this exciting companion to Good-bye Marianne, …

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Excerpt

Marianne asked her, “How did you manage to come over?”

Unconsciously, Miriam replied in her native tongue, “I met Mrs. Smedley in Berlin in 1936. She was on holiday with her husband, for the Olympic Games. I was eighteen. She asked me for directions to her hotel. I walked with her, then she invited me in. I explained it was not allowed because I was Jewish. She took my arm and said, ‘I am an English tourist; no one will stop me.’ So brave! We had coffee in her suite. She told me if I ever wanted to go to England, if things got worse, to write to her. When my father’s business was taken away, and I lost my job as his bookkeeper, my mother told me I should write to Mrs. Smedley. It was an opportunity. I did, and she sponsored me. She is very kind. I make mistakes, but she makes allowances for me. My friend Hannah lives in London too, but she lives in one little room. When she wants a bath, she must pay sixpence for the hot water.” Miriam poured more coffee. “She works in a household where they are mean to her. I think she is often hungry.”

“Why don't the Jews in England do more to help” Marianne burst out in German. “Sorry, Bridget, just this one question.”

Miriam said, “They help all they can, but there are so many of us trying to get out of Europe. Mrs. Smedley says in England less than one percent of the population is Jewish. A few are rich, but most are like us – poor, or immigrants, trying to bring their relatives to England. I’ll keep this paper, Marianne. I might hear of a place for your mother.”

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