Wednesday, November 13, 2019

World at War: White Bird

White Bird: A Wonder Story. R.J. Palacio. 2019. 224 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Julian, no more video games. Do your homework. This IS my homework. I’m FaceTiming Grandmere for my humanities project.

Premise/plot: White Bird is a Wonder story told in graphic novel form. The framework of the story stars Julian, a character first introduced in Wonder. If you need a refresher, he was one of the main bullies tormenting Auggie Pullman. But the heart and soul of this one is Julian’s assignment. His grandmother, Sara, is sharing her war story, her life-changing experiences as a Jewish girl in hiding. When the Second World War begins, Sara and her family aren’t panicking yet. They live in Free France, not the Occupied Zone. But changes come one after another. Soon there are all sorts of restrictions, rules, and dangers. Jewish people have even begun to be rounded up. Sara didn’t exactly plan out a place to hide, or even to hide at all. But a series of events soon leave her just one choice to trust a “crippled” often bullied and teased boy with her life. His name is Julian.

My thoughts: I was unfamiliar with this story. Though apparently much of it is told in a previously published novella/short story. I absolutely loved the story. I loved the relationship between Sara and Julian—both Julians. It is a heartwarming, heartbreaking story of love, endurance, kindness, and hope.

I believe that Holocaust stories both nonfiction and fiction are important—even essential. Children need to be introduced to the Holocaust. We cannot afford as a society to forget.

This is a love, love, love for me.

I believe that all people have a light that shines inside of them. This light allows us to see into other people’s hearts, to see the beauty there. The love. The sadness. The humanity. Some people, though, have lost this light. They have darkness inside them, so that is all they see. In others: darkness. No beauty. No love. Why do they hate us? Because they cannot see our light. Nor can they extinguish it. As long as we shine our light, we win. That is why they hate us. Because they will never take our light from us.

You might forget many things in your life, but you never forget kindness. Like love, it stays with you forever.

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Dora William said...
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Carla Kellina said...
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