The Night Crossing

The Night Crossing

3.7 4
by Karen Ackerman, Elizabeth Sayles
     
 

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Illus. in black-and-white. It's hard to leave your home and friends, but the Nazis have invaded Clara's native Austria, and her Jewish family is no longer safe. Clara and her family take only what they can carry and travel by night to the Swiss border, where they hope to escape to freedom. Soldiers are everywhere, and it is Clara's heroism that carries the family

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Overview

Illus. in black-and-white. It's hard to leave your home and friends, but the Nazis have invaded Clara's native Austria, and her Jewish family is no longer safe. Clara and her family take only what they can carry and travel by night to the Swiss border, where they hope to escape to freedom. Soldiers are everywhere, and it is Clara's heroism that carries the family across the border, their lives and few precious possessions intact.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An excellent fictional introduction to the Holocaust."—School Library Journal
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Set in Austria in 1938, this tale of a Jewish family's escape to Switzerland, said PW, ``has plenty of heartstopping moments... [but] the historical details are treated lightly.'' Ages 7-11. (May)
Children's Literature - Judy Silverman
This book tells the story of a very brave little girl and her heroic parents, crossing from Nazi-occupied Austria to freedom in Switzerland in 1938. It's not a new story, but it needs to be told, and this treatment of it is fresh. The entire family is very believable. It's good to know that England and the U.S. weren't the only countries to which Jews could flee.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-4-Clara treasures the two antique dolls that came with her grandmother when the family fled from the pogroms in Russia to Austria. Now the family is planning to escape from Nazi-occupied Austria, and Clara intends to take them with her. When Mama sews her treasured silver candlesticks into the petticoat of her oldest daughter, they make noise and Papa is afraid they will clank and alert the border guards. Clara then suggests hiding the candlesticks in the dolls' straw stuffing since this is their second ``night crossing,'' and they are not afraid. This is a suspenseful escape story written for transitional readers. The danger is clear but not belabored. The stress is on the family's closeness and courage. The dolls and candlesticks are tangible representations of continuity and tradition, which comfort and sustain the family. An epilogue reveals the fate of the Jews who did not escape, including Clara's grandmother. Ackerman's writing is clear and direct; despite its simplicity, it is never banal. This is an excellent fictional introduction to the Holocaust that is slightly easier to read, but for the same audience as, Claire Bishop's Twenty and Ten (Peter Smith, 1984). It will also be a good choice for less proficient older readers wanting World War II novels.-Louise L. Sherman, Anna C. Scott School, Leonia, NJ

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780679870401
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
04/28/1995
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
56
Sales rank:
287,553
Product dimensions:
5.19(w) x 7.75(h) x 0.17(d)
Lexile:
960L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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