Saturday, May 15, 2010

Island On Bird Street

I don't usually mention books on here because we seem to burn through them like logs in a fireplace, but this book/movie was good enough to get a little blurb on our blog.

A couple of  summers ago, Dancer was reading everything she could find about the Jews during World War II.  While doing a library search on the topic we happened upon this book, "The Island on Bird Street."  It is one of those books that your read, roll the plot and characters around in your mind for a while and then the story sticks with you.  It is based on a true story which, I think, makes it all that more...I want to say interesting but that isn't really the exact word I am looking for, but if you have read a true story like this you know what I am trying to convey.

A quick over view of the book is a boy Alex, his father and his uncle are three of the last people who were taken from the ghetto to concentration camps.  As they are getting on trucks, his uncle tells him to run while he makes a ruckus so the boy can get away.  The father told him before this that no matter what he would return for him so he should wait for him.  The story is about how Alex, and his gerbil Snow, live in the rubble and ruined houses on Bird Street and hide from the Nazi soldiers while he is waiting for his father.

Last week, Dancer was looking through the library web page and saw that there was a movie made about the book.  She requested it to our library branch and we picked it up yesterday.  While we don't remember the exact details of the book to compare it to the movie, the movie was very good.  A couple of times one of us would say "I don't remember that" or "that was different" but the story was still good.  Having watched it after reading the book, I can see parts where it is a bit fragmented but still the story hangs together in the movie.  The contrast in the movie between his life and the life he can see on the other side of the wall from his air vent is much more poignant in the movie that it was for me in the book. 

Both the book and movie would be good as a stand alone or excellent if you are studying this time period in history and want to add a little "living history."

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