I believe that the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid, wonderful or exciting happens - just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string. ~ Lucy Maud Mongtomery
From NYT bestselling author Jennifer A. Nielsen comes a stunning thriller about a girl who must escape to freedom after the Berlin Wall divides her family between east and west.
With the rise of the Berlin Wall, twelve-year-old Gerta finds her family suddenly divided. She, her mother, and her brother Fritz live on the eastern side, controlled by the Soviets. Her father and middle brother, who had gone west in search of work, cannot return home. Gerta knows it is dangerous to watch the wall, to think forbidden thoughts of freedom, yet she can’t help herself. She sees the East German soldiers with their guns trained on their own citizens; she, her family, her neighbors and friends are prisoners in their own city.
But one day, while on her way to school, Gerta spots her father on a viewing platform on the western side, pantomiming a peculiar dance. Then, when she receives a mysterious drawing, Gerta puts two and two together and concludes that her father wants Gerta and Fritz to tunnel beneath the wall, out of East Berlin. However, if they are caught, the consequences will be deadly. No one can be trusted. Will Gerta and her family find their way to freedom?
As a Mom, I love books that bring history to life and A Night Divided by Jennifer A. Nielsen does just that! Ms. Nielsen was able to capture the essence of the turbulent times surrounding the Berlin Wall. She brings history to life through her characters who are humanly flawed, fearful yet heroic at the same time.
Her ability to capture the essence of the emotions that occur in the tween/teen years is spot on. In fact, all of her characters in this story are so well developed they just jumped off the page and came to life in my imagination!
I highly recommend A Night Divided ~ it is a very worth while book just for the pleasure of reading it! This book would also be a great teaching tool for teachers, homeschooling and or just parent/child reading.
Thanks to Scholastic Press and Edelweiss for the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review.