cover image Searching for Lottie

Searching for Lottie

Susan L. Ross. Holiday House, $17.99 (176p) ISBN 978-0-8234-4166-2

Seventh grader Charlie was named after her great-aunt Charlotte, known as Lottie, who disappeared during the 1938 Anschluss, and who, like Charlie, was a gifted violinist. A school assignment sends Charlie on a research mission to learn what happened to Lottie: did she perish in the Holocaust, or did she survive, unbeknownst to her family? As Charlie follows clues found in mementos and memories from her beloved Nana Rose, Lottie’s younger sister, she becomes intent on finding Lottie. She researches Ellis Island archives online, tracks down translators of old German and Hungarian, and telephones strangers in other cities. Ross (Kiki and Jacques) convincingly depicts Charlie’s growing passion for—and persistence in—her quest, together with her love for music and a blossoming crush on a fellow musician. Family relationships, as well as issues of aging and Alzheimer’s, are drawn with gentleness and compassion. Ross moves the story at a smooth pace as Charlie encounters new obstacles and overcomes them, thanks to several serendipitous events. This is a tender, hopeful work with just the right level of suspense for younger fans of historical fiction. Ages 8–12. [em](Feb.) [/em]