Monday, July 15, 2013


ANNE FRANK'S CHESTNUT TREE by Jane Korhuth: Wow. A Step Into Reading book (billed for grades 1-3) that tackles, in 48 pages, the Anne Frank story. I read this aloud to my six-year-old, and I was impressed. We've talked in a limited way about World War II and the Holocaust, but it's hard to know how to approach these horrors with a child. This story isn't sugar-coated, but it also isn't overly brutal for younger readers. It's overall feeling (though it acknowledges that Anne Frank did not survive the war) is one of hope, focused on the chestnut tree Anne could see from the attic window of the Secret Annex. World War II is simplified to a sentence or two, and the Nazis and the Holocaust are briefly explained. I think for this age group, that makes it manageable for sensitive children. The message is hope, and the story brings Anne to life as a real child. This is a beautifully told story.

Source disclosure: I received an e-galley of this title courtesy of the publisher.

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