|Claiming my place : coming of age in the shadow of the Holocaust|
Author: Price, Planaria J.
A true story about a young Jewish woman who survived the Holocaust by moving into Nazi Germany and hiding in plain sight.
|Added Entry - Personal Name:||West, Helen Reichmann|
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG+
Reading Level: 6.80
Points: 12.0 Quiz: 199073
School Library Journal (04/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 02/01/2018 Holocaust stories are perennial for a reason, and the latest iteration is this account of the remarkable survival of a Polish Jew named Gucia Gomolinska. Born in a small town, she led a largely uneventful life until September 1, 1939, when she was 23 and the Germans invaded Poland. Overnight, her world was turned upside down, as her family became exposed to rabid anti-Semitism. It soon became obvious to Gucia that inaction would mean death, so she changed her name to Danuta Barbara (Basia) Tanska and, thanks to her ash-blonde hair and fair complexion, was able to assume a new life as a Polish Gentile, actually traveling to Germany, where she found work as a chambermaid, hiding from the authorities in plain sight. The fascinating story continues to Basia’s marriage and emigration to the U.S. after the war. Price has boldly elected to tell the story in Basia’s own first-person, present-tense voice. The result is a dramatic, suspenseful account of survival in extremis, told in collaboration with Basia’s American daughter. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 04/01/2018 Gr 7 Up—During her childhood in Piotrków Trybunalski, Poland, Gucia Gomolinska had access to a good education, and she actively participated in a Zionist youth group. All of that changed in 1939 when Nazi Germany invaded Poland. After losing her mother to typhoid and seeing many family members, friends, and neighbors murdered by German soldiers, Gomolinska realized that her survival depended upon hiding her identity. Under the name Danuta Barbara Tanska, Basia for short, she moved away and found work in Polish and German towns that were safer because they were supposedly Judenrein, "cleansed of Jews." Told in a present tense, first-person narrative, this true story was written based on extensive interviews with Basia. The account describes how she survived the war and also tells the stories of family and friends, such as Heniek, her longtime boyfriend, and Sabina, her companion and roommate. Basia's determination and strength of character is skillfully emphasized. An episode from her early childhood hints at this for readers (she refused to wait a year to start school after her father forgot to register her). VERDICT Thanks to the detailed memories and the conversational tone, this book provides an engaging and informative reading experience with as much appeal as a fiction title. Recommended for most YA nonfiction collections.—Magdalena Teske, West Chicago Public Library District - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.