When Canadian teen Delora James finds herself banished to Germany for the summer, reading the professor's old journals seems like a good time- waster. Once Del begins to read the translated diary of Garda - a teenager in World War II, pregnant and desperate - she is engaged by Garda's compelling story. Through a series of rebellions, she begins to draw similarities between her own world and Garda's, and is able to see past her own hostility. Sixteen-year-old Delora has been shipped off to Hamburg, Germany to live with her controlling sister. Her 'behaviour' at home has caused considerable concern so she is under house arrest till she proves she can behave otherwise. Through her sister, she meets an English professor who asks her advice on a book she is working on. Del then encounters 16-year-old Garda, whose journals make up the professor's story. Del is transported back to Nazi Germany in the Fall of 1942, is riveted by Garda's story and draws parallels not only between the places they reside but in the oppression they both feel. Garda's rape by a member of the Hilter youth, the subsquent pregancy and enstrangement from her family resonate with the reader and with Del. We are presented with the horrors of the Nazi regime through the eyes of an innocent girl. It is a strong dose of life for Del and mirrors so many of her conflicts. As Garda breaks free of her oppression, Del finds strength and acceptance of her world and those who love her.
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||749 KB|
|Age Range:||14 - 17 Years|
About the Author
Karen Bass is the multi-award-winning author of a number of novels for young adult readers. Graffiti Knight won the CLA Young Adult Book Award, the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People, the R. Ross Annett Award, and the CAA Exporting Alberta Award, among other honours. Uncertain Soldier won the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People and was a finalist for the OLA Forest of Reading Red Maple Award. Her most recent novel, The Hill,was a White Ravens Selection and a Junior Library Guild Selection, and was nominated for the Forest of Reading Red Maple Award. Karen lives in Hamilton, Ontario, where she recently moved from northwest Alberta. There she was a public library manager for sixteen years before turning to full-time writing.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Summer of Fire based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
While I was in New York on the anniversary/ book trip, the fine people at Coteau Books (based in my beloved home province of Saskatchewan) sent me two intriguing looking books. I picked up one of them, Summer of Fire, after finishing Keys to the Demon Prison Tuesday night, and briefly wondered if it was unfair to read it right after such a wonderful fantasy book. But I decided to read it all the same, and can I tell you? I wasn't disappointed.Karen Bass has woven the story of two troubled teenagers, in different times but the same city, together in a very engrossing way. 16 year old Del has been sent from Edmonton to Germany to visit her sister Cassandra and her husband Mathias for the summer. She's a wild child and because of a lot of recent issues her sister and her parents think this might be the best temporary solution for her. Del does not agree.Simultaneously we get the story of quiet Garda, shunned by everyone around her for an incident not of her making but for which her town chooses to judge her for. Garda's story, compelling and devastating, is set in 1942-43 and she struggles both with Nazi party pressures, the war around her and her slow understanding of some of the horrors surrounding her. You would think the comparison between these two girls would belittle Del's problems, but the story has been crafted so you still feel Del's sorrows as well, although she does get a titch overly angsty at times. The Book Thief is the only other book I can think of (from recent memory anyhow), using sympathetic German characters set in World War II and showing the adversity of not agreeing with Nazi policies. It's a fascinating view point, especially in this story with Garda's situation.Dell becomes a lovable character of her own as well, and was surprised when I got weepy when her big scene takes place towards the end. I was constantly impressed by how Karen Bass was able to have these significantly different stories co-exist and not have them take away from each other. Obviously Garda's was a story of far more adversity, but at no point does it belittle Del, which I kept thinking it would.This was a really lovely read, not something I was likely to run into on my own (as the hubby put it, the cover doesn't do it justice), and I would highly recommend it.