Beautifully simple in its storyline, yet complexly moving in its subject matter-The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, written by John Boyne and published in 2006 by David Fickling Books, is a book well worth the read. It features a lonely boy named Bruno who has to leave his old house in Berlin (which has five floors) and move to a new house at a place he calls “Out-With” (which only has three floors). His father is a high-ranking soldier who must fulfill his duty to his country-although Bruno doesn’t understand why it has to be at this lonely place where the only other people (besides soldiers) are wearing striped pajamas on the other side of a tall wire fence. But after he discovers a friend, life becomes more bearable at Out-With-even though this friend is always hungry, wearing striped pajamas, and on the other side of the fence. This unusual friendship blossoms despite the fence, the soldiers, and the foul weather-but friendships of this sort often result in consequences. And these consequences may be of an unexpected-and devastating-sort.
I would highly recommend this book for ages 13+. It falls under the historical fiction genre and is also labelled as a fable. There are some mature themes to watch out for-this book deals with the effects of war and hatred upon children, and how we’re truly all the same, despite our heritage and looks. One of the most heart wrenching books I’ve ever read. 4 out of 5 stars.
Featuring answered prayer, bombs, jungle prisons, midnight intrigues, and bananas; Evidence Not Seen tells the first-hand account of missionary Darlene Deibler Rose, the first American woman to enter the Baliem Valley of New Guinea. She trekked the jungles of New Guinea with her husband, was captured by the Japanese during WWII, incarcerated in a horrible prison camp, and forced to sign a false confession while facing execution at the hand of her merciless guards. This book tells of unshakable faith and wonderous miracles that will inspire the reader. Written by Mrs. Rose herself and published in 1988 by HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers; this book falls under the autobiography, WWII, and Christian biography genres.
I would highly recommend Evidence Not Seen for ages 15+. There is some violence and minor mature themes that might be unsuited for younger readers. All in all, an inspiring read with Godly themes and historical benefits. 4 out of 5 stars.
For years, the American government denied it ever happened. Those who experienced it didn’t wish to relive the horrific memories. And so the general public never knew that the Japanese invaded Alaska on June 7th, 1942, or that the native Alaskan people were forced from their homes by their own government, or that one of the deadliest hand-to-hand battles between the U.S.A. and Japan consisted of a strange chain of events that were hidden for years-and some of which are still unexplained. Ghosts in the Fog: The Untold Story of Alaska’s WWII Invasion written by Samantha Seiple and published in 2011 by Scholastic Press tells this story-the one they didn’t want us to know.
I would highly recommend this book for ages 12+. Well written, informative, and easy to read; this book lays out the facts of this battle with clarity and truthful rendering of the facts as they happened. There is no excessive gore or mature language to watch out for. All in all, 4 out of 5 stars.