By Loic Dauvillier
Illustrated by Marc Lizano and Greg Salsedo
In this young graphic novel, Dounia, a grandmother, tells her granddaughter the story even her son has never heard: how, as a young Jewish girl in Paris, she was hidden away from the Nazis by a series of neighbors and friends who risked their lives to keep her alive when her parents had been taken to concentration camps. Hidden ends on a tender note, with Dounia and her mother rediscovering each other as World War II ends and as a young girl in present-day France becomes closer to her grandmother, who can finally tell her story. 6-10 years
The Tree in the Courtyard: Looking Through Anne Frank’s Window
By Jeff Gotsfeld, Illustrated by Peter McCarty
Told from the perspective of the tree outside Anne Frank’s window this book introduces Anne Frank’s story in a gentle and powerful way to a young audience.
The tree watched a girl, who played and laughed and wrote in a diary. When strangers invaded the city and warplanes roared overhead, the tree watched the girl peek out of the curtained window of the annex. It watched as she and her family were taken away — and when her father returned after the war, alone. The tree died the summer Anne Frank would have turned eighty-one, but its seeds and saplings have been planted around the world as a symbol of peace. 5-8 years
By Patricia Polacco
Ever since the Nazis marched into Monique’s small French village, terrorizing it, nothing surprises her, until the night Monique encounters “the little ghost” sitting at the end of her bed. She turns out to be a girl named Sevrine, who has been hiding from the Nazis in Monique’s basement. Playing after dark, the two become friends, until, in a terrifying moment, they are discovered, sending both of their families into a nighttime flight. 6-9 years
The Whispering Town
By Jennifer Elvgren, Illustrated by Fabio Santomauro
The Whispering Town is the story of neighbors in a small Danish fishing village who, during the Holocaust, shelter a Jewish family waiting to be ferried to safety in Sweden. It is 1943 in Nazi-occupied Denmark. Anett and her parents are hiding a Jewish woman and her son, Carl, in their cellar until a fishing boat can take them across the sound to neutral Sweden. The soldiers patrolling their street are growing suspicious, so Carl and his mama must make their way to the harbor despite a cloudy sky with no moon to guide them. Worried about their safety, Anett devises a clever and unusual plan for their safe passage to the harbor. Based on a true story. 4-8 years
By Jane Yolen, Illustrated by Katie May Green
The Nazis may have taken their home, but the family still has a guardian angel. A little girl and her family live happily in Paris until Nazi soldiers arrive during World War II. They must flee or risk being sent to a concentration camp. They run into the woods where they meet resistance fighters. But they’re still not safe. They must cross tall mountains and sail in a rickety boat to England. Yet the whole time they’re struggling to survive, the little girl thinks of the stone angel near their apartment in Paris and imagines it watches over her family. 5-8 years
Benno and the Night of Broken Glass
By Meg Wiviott, Illustrated by Josee Bisaillon
A neighborhood cat observes the changes in German and Jewish families in its town during the period leading up to Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass that becomes the true beginning of the Holocaust. The cat’s view introduces the Holocaust to children in a gentle way. 3-8 years
Star of Fear, Star of Hope
By Jo Hoestlandt, Illustrated by Joanna Kang
Set in France, during the Nazi occupation of World War II, a gentile child named Helen recalls the mounting persecution of her Jewish friend. She wonders why does her best friend, Lydia, have to wear a yellow star? Why are people in hiding and using strange names? What is Lydia afraid of? Touching upon the Holocaust with sensitivity and poignancy, Star of Fear, Star of Hope will help readers understand this difficult time in history. 7-10 years
By Tony Johnston, Illustrated by Ron Mazellan
When the Nazis invade Poland, a family is split apart. The parents are sent to one concentration camp, and their son to another. Only his father’s gift, a harmonica, keeps the boy’s hopes alive and miraculously ensures his survival. 7-10 years
The book descriptions used are from the publishers.
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