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Orca Jewish-Interest through December 2019

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What World is Left
By (author): Monique Polak
9781551438474 Paperback, Trade English Young Adult : Grade (CAN) from 8 - 12, Grade (US) from 8 - 12, Reading age from 12 YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Historical / Holocaust Czech Republic Oct 01, 2008
$12.95 CAD
Active 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.6 in 232 pages FSC certified – mixed sources C016245 Orca Book Publishers
Booklist Editor's Choice 2008, Commended Resource Links "The Year's Best" 2008, Commended Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award nominee 2010, Short-listed ALA Best Books for Young Adults 2010, Short-listed Quebec Writers' Federation Literature Prize 2009, Winner CCBC Best Books 2010, Commended
Right and wrong have lost their meaning for Anneke.

A pampered child used to having her own way, Anneke Van Raalte lives outside Amsterdam, where her father is a cartoonist for the Amsterdam newspaper. Though Anneke's family is Jewish, her religion means little to her. Anneke's life changes in 1942 when the Nazis invade Holland, and she and her family are deported to Theresienstadt, a concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. Not only are conditions in the camp appalling, but the camp is the site of an elaborate hoax: the Nazis are determined to convince the world that Theresienstadt is an idyllic place and that European Jews are thriving under the Nazi regime. Because he is an artist, Anneke's father is compelled to help in the propaganda campaign, and Anneke finds herself torn between her loyalty to her family and her sense of what is right. What World is Left was inspired by the experiences of the author's mother, who was imprisoned in Theresienstadt during World War II.

Monique Polak is the author of over twenty novels for kids and young adults. She has also written two nonfiction books for kids as well as a board book for toddlers. Monique teaches English literature, creative writing and humanities at Marianopolis College in Montreal.

"A very personal, thought-provoking and, ultimately, hopeful book." - The Jewish Independant

"Through Anneke's eyes, author Monique Polak presents an astonishing and depressing event." - CM Magazine

[Starred review] "Heartbreaking. An important addition to the Holocaust curriculum." - Booklist

"A powerful story of growing up in unspeakable conditions, of human suffering, loss and, ultimately, hope." - The Chronicle Herald

"The underlying truth of what happened and how her family survived is really what makes this utterly compelling fiction…I am so grateful to [Monique and other authors like her] who tackle these really difficult stories and write unflinching books for teenagers." - Nikki Tate, "All Points West," CBC Radio One

"[Offers] a candid look at a father's presumed collusion, a perspective rarely seen in YA literature about the Holocaust." - Publishers Weekly

"The pressure and urgency of inspiration, not to mention tears and blood, is palpable everywhere." - The Montreal Gazette

"This book certainly holds its own in the canon of Holocaust-based fiction for the young adult audience...Polak balances this [dark reality] with uplifting moments of friendship, family tenderness and even romance." - Resource Links

"Takes the reader to the heart of the horror by creating a character whose vivid confusion, disbelief, and innocence are immediate and powerful." - The Rover

"An excellent novel—a great tale of overcoming adversity in a time of such dark despair." -

"Recommended." - Tucson Unified School District

"The descriptive narrative is cohesive, well-constructed, and compelling and provides a different view of what a man deemed necessary to survive. - Tri State Young Adult Book Review Committee

"This book is well-written, the characters are developed so well you can relate to them, the setting is described such that you can picture it in your mind, and the action and suspense make you keep turning the pages." - YALSA YA Galley Teen Review

"[This] realistic novel, written in memoir format, raises questions of moral principles and beliefs while it portrays the horrors of the Holocaust." - School Library Journal

"Well written, thought provoking, and a solid addition to the canon of Holocaust fiction - perfect for reading lists and teens who enjoy historical fiction." - VOYA

"This well-written, painful story is a good addition to the genre of Holocaust fiction… Recommended." - Library Media Connection

"Full of hope...This volume makes for great reading and an excellent resource for a school library." - Canadian Children's Book News

"Polak's story breathes life into a period fading from memory." - Montreal Review of Books

"Intriguing and quite unique...The reader will undoubtedly find much to think about. I would recommend What World is Left to anyone interested in this often-overlooked piece of history." - What If? Magazine

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