Kanada. The name meant untold riches and promise to Jutka, a young Hungarian girl who was captivated by stories of a vast, majestic country where people were able to breathe free of hatred and prejudice. Freedom was in short supply, but hatred was everywhere in Hungary as hundreds of thousands of Jews were deported to concentration camps during the last year of WWII. Jutka, her friends, and her family are sent to Auschwitz.
In that hellish place, there was another Kanada. It was the ironic name given to the storehouse at Auschwitz where the possessions — clothing and jewelry — stripped from the victims were deposited, and where Jutka was put to work.
The war may have ended, but it did not end the suffering of many of the inmates of concentration camps. Many had no homes to go to, and if they did, they were not welcome. Hundreds
went back to Poland and were murdered. Famished, diseased, and homeless, they lived in the hopelessness of camps, wondering if they could ever find a home in the world. Some went to Israel, but for Jutka there was only one dream left her — the dream of a country full of hope, where she would no longer have to live in fear.
Eva Wiseman’s powerful novel describes the war and its long, difficult aftermath with compassion and tenderness.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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About the Author
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is so amazing. Like seriously this is a page turner. It made my heart throb for the main character. The theme was captured in the best prospective. I would most definetly say that this book is 13 and + . It is an amzing book written during the time the Holocaust took place. This book will make you happy no matter how sad sone of the book is.
It is very sad to see the world through Jutka's eyes, especially when she gets separated from her friends and has to stay home as she's banned from attending school. The hatred from some of the characters just makes you want to seethe in anger at how horribly they've treated Jutka and her family. It almost wants you to jump in and throttle these people. It's very well written in the first person point of view, and Jutka is portrayed as just a normal teenage girl with friends and family she loves with the world turning upside down in a matter of months. The book is somewhat divided into several parts so you go through various stages of her life. It is tragic to read, naturally, yet the chapters are short and detail and the narration is clear and concise. Reading this book won't take long as it is very interesting, and you want to know the outcomes of some of the people she knew and the fate of Jutka herself. What I thought was interesting to see is the sudden maturity and development of Jutka the moment she enters the camp and the sudden losses she encounters. I admired her for her struggle to survive, and her ability to speak up when others stayed silent. Throughout the book she constantly dreams, especially dreams of Canada and living there. I believe those dreams were the key to her survival, and they kept her hope alive among the pain and suffering of those around her and the constant threat of death over her shoulder. I was afraid of what she was planning to do with the rest of her life, but when she came right down to her choice, I was happy for her and agreed with it. I suppose the only problem I have with this book is the outcome of Tamas. He was horrible to Jutka and thought he should have been left to rot. However, that's just my opinion. I enjoyed the ending. Unlike some of the Holocaust fiction I have read in the past, this one leaves a glimmer of hope for her, albeit bittersweet. The reader can only hope for the best for Jutka. Overall, it was a good read. It shows a great deal of strength in the face of hopelessness and suffering. We can definitely learn a lot from Jutka and what she's been through.