|Nicky & Vera : a quiet hero of the Holocaust and the children he rescued
Author: Sis, Peter
In 1938, twenty-nine-year-old Nicholas Winton saved the lives of almost 700 children trapped in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia--a story he never told and that remained unknown until an unforgettable TV appearance in the 1980s reunited him with some of the children he saved. The story of one of the children he saved--a young girl named Vera, whose family enlisted Nicky's aid when the Germans occupied their country. As the war passes and Vera grows up, she must balance her dual identities.
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|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 3.70
Points: .5 Quiz: 512288
Kirkus Reviews (+) (01/01/21)
School Library Journal (00/02/21)
Booklist (+) (12/15/21)
The Hornbook (+) (00/05/21)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 12/15/2020 *Starred Review* In 1938, British banker Nicky Winton cancelled a ski trip to meet a friend in Prague. Aware that WWII was looming and that England was accepting child refugees, he set to work arranging for the transport of as many threatened children as possible. Between March and September 1939, when Hitler invaded Poland, 8 trains rescued 669 children, including 10-year-old Vera Diamantova. Afterward, Winton told no one of his work until his wife discovered records of the transports in 1988. Once again Sís highlights a story from his native Czechoslovakia, profiling a man who saw a need and quietly did what he could to right a wrong. The inclusion of Vera's story, based on her memoir and interviews, helps to personalize this story for younger readers, and details from her diaries are incorporated into the narrative. As always, Sís' intricate artwork delights. Unique perspectives (including aerial), fanciful figures (Vera's parents flying), country outlines that become personified, and characters whose silhouettes depict their essences are all used to great effect, as are the sequential panels that depict important events in a character's life. Text is carefully sized and placed, in effect producing primary and secondary narratives. Appended with extensive author notes and sources, Sís' latest reminds readers that real heroes are often quiet and unassuming. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 02/01/2021 Gr 2–5—Sís tells the story of Nicholas Winton (1909–2015), a British citizen who helped send Czech children to England just before World War II officially broke out. In December 1938, Winton canceled a planned ski trip and joined a friend in Prague who was aiding refugees in the Sudetenland. Working from his hotel room, Winton created lists of children, took photographs, and created train schedules. He soon returned to London to work on securing visas and travel arrangements, find families to welcome the children, and handle the paperwork and bureaucracy. Vera, a young Jewish girl who was a citizen of Czechoslovakia, was one of the 669 children who were successfully brought to Great Britain through Winton's efforts. She lost all but one aunt in the war and its aftermath. Many years after World War II, Vera and some of the other children Winton helped save paid tribute to him on a television show called That's Life. Sís's illustrations combine the literal with the symbolic. Using everything from expansive spreads to miniature panels, he captures different elements from the lives of those involved. The text and the artwork demonstrate the power of one courageous individual who was determined to make a difference. VERDICT A great purchase for libraries where Sís's work is enjoyed.—Heidi Grange, Summit Elem. Sch., Smithfield, UT - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.