Room for One More

Kar-Ben. Oct. 2019. 232p. adapted by Monique Polak. pap. $8.99. ISBN 9781541540439.
Gr 3-7–Twelve-year-old Rosetta Wolff knows about the war in Europe, but living in Canada she feels far removed from its effects. She spends her days focused on her public speaking in school, loving and fighting with her two sisters, and daydreaming about her best friend’s handsome older brother. Until she eavesdrops on her parents and discovers that Jewish people are being mistreated in the war and her family is asked to help. Rosetta and her family are Jewish and decide to open their home to an orphan boy who changes Rosetta’s life forever. Jewish family life in Canada during World War II is not a frequent topic in intermediate literature, and this book provides a springboard for young readers to research and learn about a unique history. Jewish culture and the time period are colorfully described throughout, while facts about the mistreatment of Jews are gracefully and accurately presented in an age appropriate way. Rosetta is naturally curious and finds herself snooping on others, and her up-and-down relationships with her sisters will be relatable to any readers with siblings. Neatly woven throughout the story are invaluable lessons about life, family, real friends, standing up for what’s right, problem-solving skills, and learning to apologize.
VERDICT A poignant and powerful story of a young girl who finds her life and worldview changed forever, intertwined with a clear and tactful introduction of North American Jews in World War II.

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