Tuesday, February 12, 2013

A Thunderous Whisper by Christina Diaz Gonzalez

Ani's father is in Spain, a soldier in the war.  Her mother is a sardine seller.  While that sounds like nothing, it paid for their room and board and kept them alive.  It was hard work and Ani had to help, but they were doing OK.  Her mother continually told her she was just a insignificant whisper of a girl in a loud world.  When she meets Mathias, she finds a way to make her whisper louder...

Knopf sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  It has been published, so check with your local bookstore for a copy.

Ani is afraid her father might die in Spain since he's older than most of the men who went to war.  They don't hear much from him but it's hard for men who are on the front lines to write.  Mathias is like a breath of fresh air.  He's her age, has a limp, his mother is Jewish, and he has a secret.  His father is a spy.

Ani helps Mathias deliver messages for the spy network, but it becomes life-threatening when they discover that a spy from the other side is in their midst.  While they are debating how to respond to this, planes come through and bomb the town.  Mathias loses both his parents and Ani loses her mother.  They both are effectively orphaned (Ani doesn't know if her father is still alive) and now their plans become even more serious.

What Ani learns from these events is that even one small voice can make a difference.  It might not happen quickly but it can happen.  This is based on history.  Your child might want to read some more about this area and the Nazi's visit.  You can read more about the town here:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guernica

Happy reading.    

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