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Gifts from the Enemy Paperback – Import, 3 September 2019
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"Teachers will want to read this story as an introduction to the Holocaust or to spark discussion about the importance of kindness in all of our lives"
--School Library Journal
From School Library Journal
Gr 4-6--Ludwig bases this picture book on Alter Wiener's memoir, From a Name to a Number: A Holocaust Survivor's Autobiography (AuthorHouse, 2007). In a first-person narration, Wiener explains that he was 13 when the German soldiers killed his father; he was 15 when the Nazis came for him. The descriptions of his experiences in the concentration camps are accompanied by Orback's Norman Rockwell--like illustrations that convey the horror of the time period. The brightly hued illustrations of the small town of Chrzanow are in stark contrast to the dark and agonizing depictions of the camps. Among the darkness and despair, however, came an unexpected gift from the enemy: a German factory worker left him a sandwich every day for the 30 days he worked in the building. The book concludes with an afterword by Wiener, a paragraph explaining the Holocaust, vocabulary, discussion questions, and recommended activities. Teachers will want to read this story as an introduction to the Holocaust or to spark discussion about the importance of kindness in all of our lives.
--Annette Herbert, F. E. Smith Elementary School, Cortland, NY
Ludwig's picture-book adaptation of Alter Wiener's 2007 memoir, From a Name to a Number: A Holocaust Survivor's Autobiography, recounts Wiener's experiences as a Jewish youth in Poland during WWII. She describes his family life before the war, the rise of Adolph Hitler, Wiener's father's death during the 1939 German invasion of Poland, and Wiener's own deportation to a prison labor camp two years later. While life in the camps is brutal, Wiener also remembers the courage and kindness of one German woman, a camp employee, who risks her own life to smuggle food to him. Ludwig's text lacks specificity with regard to Holocaust atrocities, a plus for the intended audience. Orback's luminous oil paintings are respectful of the subject matter and make effective use of light and shadowing. Concluded with an afterword, discussion questions, and suggested activities, this should spark debates about judging individuals based on the actions of larger groups. Pair with Leon Leyson, Marilyn J. Harran, and Elisabeth B. Leyson's The Boy on the Wooden Box (2013) for another survivor story. Grades 3-5.
About the Author
CRAIG ORBACK has extensive experience making children's stories come alive with his paintings. He has illustrated over 20 children's books, including Born to Draw Comics: The Story of Charles Schulz and the Creation of Peanuts and The Can Man. He also works on other projects for children's magazines and school textbook publishers. Craig lives with his family near Seattle, WA, where he teaches children's book illustration classes at several local colleges. Visit www.craigorback.com to see more of his work.
- Publisher : Ludwig Creative, Inc. (3 September 2019)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 34 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0578553260
- ISBN-13 : 978-0578553269
- Reading age : 8 - 12 years
- Item Weight : 136 g
- Dimensions : 27.94 x 0.23 x 21.59 cm
- Country of Origin : India
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Susan D. Boedeker RN, OCN
This is a MUST for youth as well as adults. Thank you Trudy Ludwig for taking Alter Wiener's book "From A Name To A Number; A Holocaust Survivor's Autobiography" and gifting it to young people all over the world! The Questions for Discussion and Recommended Activities in the back of the book are wonderful.
A quote from Trudy "May we all never underestimate how acts of kindness-no matter how big or small-can make a positive difference in the lives of those we touch.