Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Prisoner B-3087 - A Book Worth Reading

Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz

I am always amazed when I read stories of WWII survivors - especially those of children.  I have never heard of Jack (Yanek) Gruener before coming across the book Prisoner B-3087 at a Scholastic Book Fair. But now that I have read his story, I will never forget him. At age 10 Jack's life changed in unbelievable ways. He spent 6 years in ten different concentration camps- coming across some real monsters,even Josef Mengele. 

The opening line in Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz really says so much. "If I had known what the next six years of my life were going to be like, I would have eaten more." And that's just the beginning of the trials, torture, and pain that Jack suffers for six years. Though this book is fiction, it is based on Jack (Yanek) Gruener's life. So many times, he could have given up, but Jack continued to find something within himself to keep going. He may have been beaten, and starved, and tortured, but he did not let the Nazi's win! They took his family, his friends, his possessions, but they did not take his dignity or his life.

Alan Gratz does a superb job at telling Jack's story...a story of historical importance, a story of courage, and a story of hope.

If you are looking for a book about the Holocaust, this is worth reading.  It's  a great book for middle school children as well.  It's easy to understand, but doesn't water down the horrors of what happened during WWII. 

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