Defiance

By: Carla Jabonski & Leland Purvis

Defiance

Writen by Carla Jablonski

Published by First second; Original edition(July 19, 2011)

ISBN: 1596432926

Genre: Historical Fiction

Grades: 7 & up

Review

It is 1943 and the Terrier siblings - Paul, his younger sister Marie and his older sister Sylvie - live in Vichy occupied France. Their father is a prisoner of war and the occupying Germans and the French military police enforcing the rules are a source of angst for all. In Defiance the children all secretly get involved in fighting the occupiers in different ways. The war and occupation takes a personal toll on the Terriers' lives. The story, told in graphic novel form, addresses difficult topics including questions of children's control in the face of their powerlessness to the military and other authorities. The Terrier children question if they can trust the authorities as well as neighbors, friends and even their relatives where opinions differ and lives are at stake. As the second in the three-volume Resistance series, this graphic novel stands well alone. Jews don't really have a central role in the book. The local Jews have already been deported. With an extensive historical and author's note as well as the violence and fear of World War II, this book is best for mature readers 11 and up who can keep track of complicated story lines. Ages 11 and up. Dina Weinstein


Continuing on from the second book, Paul and his older sister continue to work for the Resistance unbeknownst to their mother who has given up her part in the shady dealings to keep her family safe. The eldest girl's boyfriend is deeply involved with the movement causing her to wonder whether he really likes her or is just using her to get information from the Germans. Paul is working independently putting irreverent drawings around town of the Germans which are starting to cause a fuss. At this time in the history of the occupation we learn of the French police force started and run by the Germans called the Milice. A German military police force manned by French residents, obviously not a popular group with the locals. Throughout the plot we also learn of the Maquis, resistance groups hiding out in the forests planning for the moment when they can attack back. We learn of Philippe Petain, the leader of the new French State which worked in cooperation with the Nazis and we see the benefits that women were able to garner for themselves and their families if they fraternized with the Germans. Sometimes this was often a very hard decision to make when children were involved. The book ends with the family members not in accord with each other but with a ray of hope for the future as they celebrate a birthday and letter received from Papa. A grand sequel to the first book. I'm very much looking forward to where the final book will take us as I am expecting something tragic to happen.


Other websites

http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-59643-292-5

http://www.carlajablonski.com/

http://www.shelf-awareness.com/readers-issue.html?issue=16#m323

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