I Survived the Nazi Invasion, 1944

Scholastic/Graphix. (I Survived Graphic Novel). 3. Feb. 2021. 160p. adapted by adapt. by Georgia Ball. Tr $24.99. ISBN 9781338666380.
Gr 3-6–The latest graphic novel adaptation of Tarshis’s popular series is a crowd-pleaser. In 1944, Max and Zena are alone in the Jewish ghetto of Esties, Poland, their father having been taken away by Nazi soldiers. Living hand to mouth, the siblings spy a raspberry bush just beyond the fence line. When Max tries to grab a handful, he’s swiftly caught by a Nazi guard, who accidentally shoots himself. The two run, and their harrowing journey to safety begins. After a sympathetic farmer hides them from a German search party, the children meet a Jewish network of resistance fighters who hide in the Polish woods, undermining the Nazi soldiers by destroying weapons and supplies. Max and Zena are delighted to find that their long-lost aunt is part of the partisan group with which they connect, and together they make a daring escape from certain death. Those familiar with this installment will anticipate the traumas and triumphs of the story, while newcomers to the series will also be pulled in; all will be satisfied with the mostly happy resolution. The subdued, earthy palette is punctuated by the harsh red of the Nazi flag, the same color as the few depictions of cartoon blood. Max, Zena, and other characters are white.
VERDICT Another effective comics translation in this first-rate series, this is an excellent addition to libraries, especially where Tarshis’s other titles circulate well.

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