Escaping into the night
D. Dina Friedman
Escaping into the night is a book that explains how was the life of the people who were able to escape during the Holocaust. The main character of the book is Halina a thirteen year old girl who lived with her mom in the ghetto. As the story begins we are also introduced to Georg, he was the boyfriend of Halina's mom but Halina didn't seem to like him. One day Halina was very worried because her mom hadn't return back from work and she knew everyone should be inside before it was dark but instead Georg came home that night warning Halina to be careful because they had taken all the people from the munition company where Halina's mom worked. Halina was devastated and she couldn't imagine her mom dead she was the only person she had left, and the only valuable things for her that she had were her mom's coat and a stone. Georg had a plan already to help people escape. That night Georg took Halina and her friend Batya a fifteen year old girl to a tunnel they had dug for weeks in which was connected to a sewer line since that was the only way they could escape even if it wasn't very easy. The people helping also gave them a gun and a map where they had to go. They put the two girls with a boy name Reuven and his two brothers to protect them. Once they finally got out of the tunnel they tried to follow the map but they had to rest after not being able to find the barn they were looking for. They were very hungry so Max and Abel the brother's of Reuven decided to go into town to search for food as the others tried to sleep and the next day they wanted to go look for them but it was too dangerous luckily Mr. Grolsky found them, he was a good man who saved them. He took them into the forest as far away from the Germans and led them to a place where Jews and other people were hiding. They lived underground it was a secret encampment where everyone was there hiding and waiting for the war to be over. When they got to the camp they had their own space underground to sleep. Halina was put to work as well as Reuven but it was very hard for them because they both had lost someone who they loved. Halina would go to the river and think about what would it be like if her mom was alive, she always kept her lucky stone with her and one day as she was sitting by the river a guy named Eli heard her sing and he was amazed by her singing that he would always ask her to sing as he played his violin but Halina started to like him and she believed that he liked her back but the problem for her was that he was 10 years older than her. She encounter a lot of situations that were hard from starving and losing her mother to being close to death but she never lost hope because she was very brave like her mom and strong too, life was very rough and extremely dangerous but they managed to stay together and protect themselves. The men from the camp would get medications and food from town but they had to be careful and not get caught. They had many problems and fights in the camp but they were always together, it was hard and very risky to go out of the camp and look for food and other resources because they could have gotten caught by the Nazis and luckily they never did. After months of living in the forest they finally got rescued and what a surprise Halina had when she saw Georg alive! After all the struggles to survive she still had hope and that was one thing she always had because she wanted to live for her mom and she was very happy to be with Batya, Reuven, and Georg even though she lost her mom and Eli in the war. The only memory she had was her lucky stone and her mother's coat that she valued them very much.
My thoughts of this book is that it's very clear and it illustrates everything great, it's also very sad but inspiring because I can't see myself in that position I feel like I wouldn't be as strong as Halina or as brave as Reuven. Living underground hiding from people who wanted to kill you is very hard and I find it both dangerous and not easy at all, I just can't imagine myself being there but I love how the people in the camp never lost hope because they felt and knew it would soon be over and soon they could live free.
I recommend this book to others because it explains the life people had to live who were able to get out of the ghetto and how they lived underground and still being able to provide food and medical things. The age recommendation is for middle school kids to adults because it's very easy to understand and well explained. I think people would want to read this book because it's interesting and it has a very vivid illustration of their lives which I find very interesting and inspiring.
What I learned
I learn that people who were able to escape had trouble even though they were out of the ghetto because they still weren't safe, and also that people did live underground trying to survive the war which is very inspiring to me because they would always be very strong and never lose hope that one day the could live free. Most of the time I never thought of the people who were able to escape and what could they been doing but after reading this book it made me think of the people who were able to escape because I usually thought of the people who were going to die but this book teaches a lot about the poeple escaping the Holocaust.
Halina is a very strong person in the book it says " I'm strong and brave just like my mother" this is saying that one quality of Halina is being strong and brave, also she is a very thoughtful person because in various parts of the book she is always thinking about others too even if she has to suffer and sacrifice herself. Halina was also very compassionate with her friends she made in the camp she always tried to help and she put her friends first when they were sick or hit she always thought about them and tried helping them.
Halina and others had to escape through a tunnel.
Jews had to live in the forest underground.
Many factories were invaded by the Nazis and the people were all killed.