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I've read several historical novels of this period in which the Jews were treated as pariahs. When I saw this story, told through the eyes of a 12 year old girl, the granddaughter of a famous rabbi, I was immediately attracted. The conflicting emotions that Elvina feels are told skilfully by the author (a niece of Simone Weil) and interpreted brilliantly by the narrator. This is a beautiful tale that should not only be read by the target audience of 10 to 15 year old girls, but by anyone who enjoys a heartwarming message. It shows that reaching out to understand and help someone who is very different from oneself brings unexpected blessings.
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