Gr 6-9 While the events of this World War II story, based on Gehrts' own experiences, are moving and compelling, this is not a wholly satisfying novel. Anna, the narrator, sees the war gradually and inescapably destroy what has been her life. Her first love is killed at the Russian front; a part-Jewish friend commits suicide; her father, a colonel in the Luftwaffe, is imprisoned and finally executed for treason; and her brother Hannes dies during labor service. When their house and her mother's office building are destroyed by bombs, Anna and her mother at last leave Berlin for Schleswig-Holstein, where it is as if there were no war. The first chapter, in which the various characters discuss the progress and probable direction of the war, is confusing. Although readers may feel Anna's love for Erik and Hannes, these young men never become fully realized characters. Only Anna and her father emerge as distinctive characters. There is no real resolution, just a closing description of Anna and her mother watching distant bombing, and a brief afterword explaining the author's motivation in writing the book. However, as a memoir, the book is successful. Anna's experiences and the effect they have on her should appeal to teenagers interested in the war. Martha Bennett Stiles' Darkness Over the Land (Dial, 1966; o.p.) and James Forman's Horses of Anger (Farrar, 1967; o.p.) are better novels dealing with experiences of non-Jewish Germans during the war. Louise L. Sherman, Anna C. Scott School, Leonia, N.J.