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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Devil's Arithmetic by Jane Yolen

The Devil's Arithmetic
By Jane Yolen
Publisher: Puffin Books, 2004
170 pages, paperback
Date Finished: 11/7/2011
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Coming of Age, Fantasy
Hannah thinks tonight's Passover Seder will be the same as always. Little does she know that this year she will be mysteriously transported into the past where only she knows the horrors that await.
~First Line: " 'I'm tired of remembering,' Hannah said to her mother as she climbed into the car."
~Last Line: "Life."
~Last Line (of author's "What is True about this Book"): "And can remind us that the swallows still sing around the smokestacks."

Review: The first time I'd even heard this title, we were studying World War II in English. Unfortunately we didn't get to read the book; I was glad that I found the book, though! The movie was really good, and the book was even better! :)

Our main character, Hannah Stern, is tired of remembering about what happened during World War II. She doesn't see why it's all so importaqnt to keep remembering every year. She gives all of her wine willingly (when you're only supposed to pour part of it) and is given the task of opening the door for Elijah. Voila. Somehow twenty-first century Hannah Stern is sent back in time to 1962.

I loved the plot of this. Since I'd already seen the movie, it was definitely easier to picture the characters. Still, everything that happened was, in a way, new to me all over again. I can understand why Hannah didn't want to remember every year. To her, it was boring and in the past. Why bother with it; it's not like you can go back and change it. But I think once she went back in time and actually lived it, she realized why they work so hard to remember it, and to make sure that the children know it.

Hannah definitely became appreciative of her family's past. I became more educated on what really happened in the camps. I think everyone can learn something from this book, and maybe even the movie. Recommending this one to anyone and everyone! :)

Plot Rating: 4.5
Character Rating: 5
Cover Rating: 3.5

Overall Rating:
Colorful Animated Butterfly Pictures, Images and PhotosColorful Animated Butterfly Pictures, Images and PhotosColorful Animated Butterfly Pictures, Images and PhotosColorful Animated Butterfly Pictures, Images and Photos and a half :)


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