Author: Lasky, Kathryn
Is the chance to serve as an extra for Hitler's favorite filmmaker a chance at life--or a detour on the path to inevitable extermination?
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.60
Points: 9.0 Quiz: 161176
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 3.80
Points: 15.0 Quiz: 61582
Kirkus Reviews (09/01/13)
School Library Journal (12/01/13)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/11/13)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 10/15/2013 The year is 1940. Lilo, 15, and her family are Gypsies (Romani) who have been rounded up by the Nazis and sent to the Maxglan internment camp. It is there that Leni Riefenstahl, Hitler’s favorite film director, selects Lilo and her mother to serve as extras in her new movie, Tiefland. As shooting of the film begins, Riefenstahl quickly emerges as a beautiful but feral and very, very dangerous woman. As for the extras, they’re little more than slaves who are living not in a cinematic dreamworld but, instead, in a waking nightmare. Aside from her mother, the only bright spot in Lilo’s life is the boy Django, a brilliant survivor and indispensable information-gatherer. But even he can’t know what their fate will be when the filming concludes. Could it be freedom? Lasky has written a harrowing and deeply moving novel that focuses attention on a seldom-told story of the Nazis’ attempt to exterminate the Romani people. Thoroughly researched and insightful, the book is ideal for classroom use and discussion. - Copyright 2013 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 12/01/2013 Gr 8 Up—In 1940 Vienna, 15-year-old Lilo lives with her mother and father under the watchful eyes of the Nazis, who have recently fingerprinted and identified the family as a part of the "Gypsy plague." Soon after, they are arrested and taken to jail to await deportation to an internment camp. When they are separated, Lilo and her mother are transferred to another camp where they are selected to be extras in Leni Riefenstahl's latest film. Treated as slaves, they are all at the mercy of the mercurial director, who quickly dispatches those who displease her. When her mother disappears, The teen escapes to Salzburg where she is hidden from the Gestapo but then recaptured. Facing extermination, she makes the courageous decision to escape once again, leading to her eventual rescue by Allied forces. Inspired by actual events, Lasky's intense novel exposes readers to the atrocities endured by Gypsies during World War II, specifically those who worked on the film Tiefland. Told from a third-person point of view, the story never really allows readers to feel what Lilo feels yet it manages to convey the horrors she witnesses with frightening clarity. The narrative moves briskly as characters come and go in Lilo's life, which is beneficial since many of the supporting figures are flat and indistinguishable from one another. With its abrupt ending, however, the story seems unfinished and may leave readers wondering what Lilo's future holds.—Audrey Sumser, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Mayfield, OH - Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.