cover image Genevieve’s War

Genevieve’s War

Patricia Reilly Giff. Holiday House, $16.95 (240p) ISBN 978-0-8234-3800-6

In this standalone companion to Giff’s Newbery Honor–winning Lily’s Crossing, Genevieve, a 13-year-old American, is spending the summer in Alsace with her aloof grandmother, Mémé, when the WWII German occupation begins. Unwilling to flee and leave Mémé behind, Gen stays in France, and their quiet farm life begins to change drastically: a Nazi soldier commandeers a room in Mémé’s home; food and animals are acquisitioned by the German army, leaving the French population to starve; books are burned; and French names are erased, replaced with German monikers. When Gen’s friend Remy is hurt while working for the underground resistance, she and her grandmother join the fight, hiding him in their attic and helping to plan safe passage out of Alsace. Giff ably illustrates the physical and mental effects of war, and the heroism found in unexpected places and people. The atmosphere of fear and mistrust is viscerally felt, but the resistance provides a sliver of hope amid the grim realities of war. Gen’s relationship with her grandmother, which deepens into mutual respect and understanding, is especially rich and engaging. Ages 8–12. [em](Mar.) [/em]