Holocaust Memorial Day Booklists for Teens

In Support of Holocaust Memorial Day January 27, 2017 all Wokingham Borough Libraries will have materials on display along with information booklets and books to borrow from the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.      

 Booklists have been created and a wealth of information is available to use on the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust website, http://hmd.org.uk/page/resources-your-activity

Refugee Boy by Benjamin Zephaniah

Alem’s Father is Ethiopian and his mother is Eritrean.  Their countries are at war and Alem is not safe. He is not welcome in Ethiopia because he has Eritrean blood. He cannot live in Eritrea because his Father is from Ethiopia.  His Father takes him to a place of safety but staying there will not be easy.  Alem meets many challenges, which he faces with courage.  Circumstances beyond his control force him to live away from the land of his birth.  He has to pick up the pieces and start again.  As he struggles to come to terms with all that has happened to his loved ones there are some people prepared to help him and some who do their best to make life as difficult as possible. – See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/refugee-boy-benjamin-zephaniah#sthash.Q0HBkkhC.dpuf

 A song for summer by Eva Ibbotson

A Song for Summer will appeal to students aged 14 and above.  It introduces readers to a cast of colourful characters who work and study at a drama, dance and music school in Austria.  The Nazis are rising to power in neighbouring Germany when Ellen, the daughter of a former suffragette, travels from England to take a post at the school.  There she meets Marek, who works as the school’s gardener and odd job man.  When Marek disappears Ellen discovers that he is keeping many things secret.  On his return she is drawn into a rescue mission. Isaac, Marek’s friend, a Jewish musician, is on the run and the Nazis are drawing near. – See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/song-summer-eva-ibbotson#sthash.7ssfA4Nc.dpuf

I’m So Not a Pop Star  by Kimberley Greene

Written in a similar style to Jacqueline Wilson, I’m So Not a Pop Star cleverly uses a mixture of normal prose and blogs written by the main character Sam.  It is fun and fast-moving with lots of exciting events, like a Day of the Dead Celebration.  The story follows Sam and her family, who are the stars of their own reality TV show because Sam’s big sister Danni is a pop star.  Sam has always wanted to know more about her father who died when she is little, and her mum finally reveals the little she knows, turning Sam and Danni’s world upside down.  It would be suitable for readers aged 13 and above, and although it is a sequel, it can be read standalone novel.

– See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/im-so-not-pop-star-kimberley-greene#sthash.BHtmN4qv.dpuf

Kommandant’s Girl by Pam Jenoff

Emma Bau has been married to Jacob for six weeks but the Jewish newlyweds are torn apart when Poland is invaded.  Jacob is a member of the Resistance and he has to flee from

Krakow, leaving his young wife behind.  Emma must struggle to survive by taking on a new identity.  As Anna Lipowski, a ‘gentile orphan girl newly arrived from Gdansk’ she finds herself in a unique position and is able to gather intelligence for the Jewish Resistance but in order to do this she is forced to make difficult choices which have serious consequences for her friends and family.

The book is not recommended for younger students but works well with AS, A2 and Highers candidates, as well as within general discussion groups at post-16 levels.

– See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/kommandant%E2%80%99s-girl-pam-jenoff#sthash.VQCWxpL3.dpuf

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Set in an alternative reality to the current day, Malorie Blackman’s Noughts and Crosses books (there are currently four of them in the series) posits a world divided into two: crosses, the ruling black people, and noughts, white people. Malorie Blackman cleverly finds things we take for granted in our society and turns them on their head, forcing the reader to challenge their preconceptions of the world.

The first book in the series, Noughts and Crosses, establishes the central characters, notably Sephy Haley, a cross, and Callum McGregor, a nought. It is clear from the outset that their relationship will be pivotal to the plot: noughts and crosses do not usually mix and their friendship is discouraged by both their families. The book is very compelling and ends leaving the reader wanting to dash straight into the next book!

– See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/noughts-and-crosses-%E2%80%93-malorie-blackman#sthash.10dllC2s.dpuf

Tales from the Secret Annexe by Anne Frank

Tales from the Secret Annexe is a collection of short stories and fictional accounts which were found amongst the papers and Diary of Anne Frank after the discovery and arrest of Anne and her family in Holland in August 1944.   – See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/tales-secret-annexe-anne-frank#sthash.3Tbo3WYs.dpuf

The Diary Of A Young Girl by Anne Frank

Anne Frank was born in Germany on 12 June 1929.  She moved with her family to Amsterdam in 1933 when the Nazis came to power in Germany.  Anne and her family were trapped in The Netherlands when the Nazi invasion began in 1940.  Anne began to keep a personal diary on her thirteenth birthday.  She wrote ‘I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as I have never been able to confide in anyone, and I hope you will be a great source of comfort and support’.  In July 1942 the Frank family and four other people went into hiding in a secret annex. Anne is perhaps the most famous victim of the Holocaust but as an ordinary Jewish teenager she represents the millions who died because of one group’s hatred of another.

– See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/diary-young-girl-anne-frank#sthash.VvZp2ucu.dpuf

The English German Girl by Jake Wallis Simons

Rosa Klein is a young Jewish girl growing up in Berlin in the 1930s.  Her father, Otto, is a successful doctor and her brother and sister enjoy going to school and playing.

The story begins as the Nazis start to ban Jews from certain professions. Otto finds his patients being taken away from him and his ability to practice diminished, until he is banned from practicing medicine at all.  We see the family start to disintegrate as each member becomes increasingly forced out of society.  Heinrich, Rosa’s older brother, becomes involved in the young Jewish group Maccabi Hatzair and violent clashes with the Nazi Youth leave his parents scared for his safety. – See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/english-german-girl-jake-wallis-simons#sthash.WrZ88zzV.dpuf


The Search by Eric Heuvel, Ruud Van Der Rol and Lies Schippers

The Search is a graphic novel, translated from the Dutch original.  It has proved popular with teenage readers as it moves at a dramatic pace.  Daniel’s Gran, Esther, visits the Dutch farm where she was hidden from the Nazis.  She hopes to discover what happened to the other people she once knew, those who helped her escape and those who were also in hiding.  She knows that her parents were murdered in Auschwitz but nothing else.  Her grandson uses the internet to track down an old friend and other histories emerge.  Esther talks to her friend Helena and Helena remembers a book of pictures.

If your students find this book helpful a parallel text by the same team A Family Secret, tells stories of the same period through the eyes of Helena, Esther’s friend. Both books introduce students to difficult issues, such as discrimination, death camps, collaboration with the Nazis and the actions and choices made by individual people.

– See more at: http://hmd.org.uk/resources/books-for-youngs/search-eric-heuvel-ruud-van-der-rol-and-lies-schippers#sthash.8s0LinTK.dpuf

The Earth is singing by Vanessa Curtis

My name is Hanna. I am 15. I am Latvian. I live with my mother and grandmother. My father is missing, taken by the Russians. I have a boyfriend and I’m training to be a dancer. But none of that is important any more. Because the Nazis have arrived, and I am a Jew. And as far as they are concerned, that is all that matters. This is my story.

No Stars at the Circus by Mary Flynn

‘No Stars at the Circus’ is the beautifully told story of 10-year-old Jonas Alber, as written in his notebooks. Jonas lives in hiding in the Professor’s house during the six months following the round-up of Jews in Paris on 16 July 1942. He spends his days reading about his favourite subjects and also writes about his present life in the attic, as well as the past, in which the circumstances of his rescue are revealed. He writes about his friends at the circus and the family he greatly misses. Unaware of the atrocities happening around him and throughout Europe, Jonas hears that his parents have gone off ‘to work’ and is worried about his little sister, Nadia, who is deaf – so worried that one day he steps outside in the hope of finding out where she is.

All of the recommended titles can be borrowed from Wokingham Borough Libraries https://wokingham.spydus.co.uk  or visit www.wokingham.gov.uk/libraries


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