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Just a Girl: A True Story of World War II



by
Lia Levi
illustrated by
Jess Mason

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
HarperCollins
Imprint
HarperCollins
ISBN
9780063065086
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism , Discrimination: Religious , Language: Infrequent Use , Language: Mild Language , Violence: War/Harsh Realities of War
$23.17   $19.31
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From Italian-Jewish author Lia Levi comes her award-winning memoir, detailing how she came of age in Fascist Italy during World War II. Complete with endearing black-and-white illustrations throughout, a moving author's note, and family photos.

1938, Italy. Lia is terribly shy with a birdlike, quiet voice. When Mama tells Lia that prime minister Mussolini doesn't want Jewish children in schools anymore, Lia is happy. No more school! No one will be angry about her small voice. But why is Mussolini singling out Jewish people?

At just six years old, Lia doesn't know the terms "discrimination" or "anti-Semitism," but she will live and experience it, as Hitler and Mussolini's racial laws take more and more from her family and friends. Eventually her parents are forced to send Lia and her sisters to hide at a convent. Unfortunately, there are still math lessons but also a theater with costumes and a piano. Through it all, Lia tries to understand what's happening and adapt to her new life, all while longing to be "just a girl." From Lia Levi comes a simply written, beautifully illustrated memoir of a girl who becomes progressively more aware of the world and complex human nature, growing into a thoughtful, reflective young woman. Just a Girl is perfect for fans of Kimberly Brubaker Bradley and Lois Lowry

From Lia Levi comes a simply written, beautifully illustrated memoir of a girl who becomes progressively more aware of the world and complex human nature, growing into a thoughtful, reflective young woman. Just a Girl is perfect for fans of Kimberly Brubaker Bradley and Lois Lowry.

Letter from the author. “A Photo Album of Lia Levi and Her Family, 1938–1948).” Black-and-white illustrations.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism , Discrimination: Religious , Language: Infrequent Use , Language: Mild Language , Violence: War/Harsh Realities of War

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

144

Trim Size

8 1/2" x 5 1/2"

Dewey

B

AR

5.1: points 3

Genre

Nonfic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Sep 2022

Book Genres

Autobiography/Biography, Memoir

Topics

 Lia Levi (1931– ). Families. Italy. Jews. Jewish children in the Holocaust. Benito Mussolini (1883–1945). World War II (1939–1945). Convents. Boarding schools. 

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 3-7-Lia Levi tells the story of her childhood as a young Jewish girl living in Italy and Rome during World War II. Lia's life begins to change when her mother tells her she can no longer attend her Italian school. Because of Mussolini's new laws, Lia must now attend a Jewish school. While this change doesn't affect Lia much, it is the first of many changes that worry her and cause her family to be separated. Lia's father loses his job, and their family must move multiple times for him to find work that will support their family. When the war gets too close to home, Lia's parents send her and her sisters to live at a convent in hopes of disguising them as Christian children. This unique story is both heartbreaking and sweet. Lia goes through many difficult situations, but, as a young girl would, she finds ways to be positive and have fun through this terrible time. The illustrations included add context for readers, along with interjections from Lia's adult self that usually refers to the readers as "dear readers." Levi's story is perfect for young children who want to learn more about the Holocaust, but aren't ready for the more horrific details. VERDICT An excellent addition to elementary memoir and World War II collections.-Lisa Buffi

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 3-7-Lia Levi tells the story of her childhood as a young Jewish girl living in Italy and Rome during World War II. Lia's life begins to change when her mother tells her she can no longer attend her Italian school. Because of Mussolini's new laws, Lia must now attend a Jewish school. While this change doesn't affect Lia much, it is the first of many changes that worry her and cause her family to be separated. Lia's father loses his job, and their family must move multiple times for him to find work that will support their family. When the war gets too close to home, Lia's parents send her and her sisters to live at a convent in hopes of disguising them as Christian children. This unique story is both heartbreaking and sweet. Lia goes through many difficult situations, but, as a young girl would, she finds ways to be positive and have fun through this terrible time. The illustrations included add context for readers, along with interjections from Lia's adult self that usually refers to the readers as "dear readers." Levi's story is perfect for young children who want to learn more about the Holocaust, but aren't ready for the more horrific details. VERDICT An excellent addition to elementary memoir and World War II collections.-Lisa Buffi

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