Title: The Earth is Singing
Author: Vanessa Curtis
Publisher: Usborne Publishing
Publication Date: 27th January 2015 – Holocaust Memorial Day and the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Pages: approx. 331
My name is Hanna Michelson. I am fifteen. I am Latvian. I live with my mother and grandmother. My father is missing – taken by the Russians. I have a boyfriend. When he holds my hand, everything feels perfect. I’m training to be a dancer. But none of that matters now. 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.
The Book in 3 Words:
Touching, Empowering, Heart-breaking.
I was sent this book by lovereading.co.uk and I am so very grateful, so thank you! As a fan of Markus Zusak’s “The Book Thief” I was so excited when I heard about this book, due to be published in January 2015. Based on a true story, the book follows Hanna, a Latvian Jew, whose life changed dramatically when the Nazi’s invaded Latvia. The story retells the forgotten tale of the Jews of Riga, and will fascinate you in this heart-breaking story.
I have to admit, the book was one of two halves for me. The first 100 pages were a struggle, as I found the book really hard to get into. The language was quite basic, and it took me quite a while to get used to. Nonetheless, I decided to keep reading anyway and oh, how I am so glad I did… The second half of the book was just phenomenal, I couldn’t put it down.
The book is full of so many twists of events, you won’t be able to turn the pages fast enough! The character progression was amazing. I started off not really having an opinion on Hanna at the start of the book, to loving and respecting her towards the end. Omama and Uncle Georgs were two characters that I found myself loving so very much. The story is quite emotional and deep, but Omama’s crazy words lifted the mood and added humour when needed, which was really lovely to read. And, in the midst of the Nazi horror, the kindness of Uncle Georgs was a refreshing hope in humanity.
The book was very emotional, and I found myself in tears more times than one. The story really got to me, and I think that was because of the fact that horrible things like the holocaust did actually happen in the past. It was scary to think this story was only partly fiction. I am studying Nazi Germany in school, but seeing the Nazi era from a Jew’s perspective opened my eyes to the true horrors of the holocaust, and I thought the storyline did it justice.
Overall, I would recommend everyone to read this book, and I am so excited for its release in January! I hope you enjoyed reading my review.