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The Extra



by
Kathryn Lasky

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Candlewick
Imprint
Candlewick
ISBN
9780763639723

Awards and Honors
2013 National Jewish Book Award Winner, Children’s and Young Adults; Winner, IRA Notable Books for a Global Society, 2014
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Strong Language, Discrimination: Reference/Discussion, Sexual Content: Strong Sexual Content/Themes, Violence: Graphic Descriptions, Violence: Genocide, Violence: Death, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape
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QTY
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JLG Category

History High

Filmmaker and Reich ally Leni Riefenstahl picks Lilo, a Gypsy girl arrested by Nazis, to be an extra. The sets are glamorous, but conditions offscreen are vile. Author’s note.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Strong Language, Discrimination: Reference/Discussion, Sexual Content: Strong Sexual Content/Themes, Violence: Graphic Descriptions, Violence: Genocide, Violence: Death, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

320

Trim Size

5 1/2" x 8 1/4"

Dewey

F

AR

4.6: points 9

Lexile

660L

Genre

Fiction

Scholastic Reading Counts

15

JLG Release

Dec 2013

Book Genres


Topics

World War II (1939-1945). Gypsies. Twentieth-century Austrian history. Helene Bertha Amalie "Leni" Riefenstahl (1902-2003). Filmmakers and filmmaking. Twentieth-century German history. Puppetry. Concentration camps.

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, Booklist, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)

Junior Library Guild

  • A fascinating fictionalized account of Sinti and Roma gypsies imprisoned by Nazis and forced to work for filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl. The focus on the gypsies, whose persecution by the Nazis is often overlooked, makes this a particularly compelling Holocaust novel.
  • Lilo, the story’s Sinti protagonist, is eminently sympathetic. She is brave and bold, suffering harrowing ordeals that include being separated from (and eventually losing) her father, and then her mother. More than once, she defies her oppressors to save her own life.
  • The book has an inherent tension that makes for a quick, absorbing read: Lilo’s life—like the rest of the gypsies’—is deemed cheap, and Riefenstahl is an unpredictable tyrant who can, and does, condemn people to death.
  • Provides insight and commentary on filmmaking’s pretenses, and how what is not shown can be as important as what is onscreen. As Lilo’s mother puts it: “‘This isn’t Hollywood, and we’re not extras. They lock the barn, remember? We bathe in the cow barn and go to latrines. We sit on rough boards to do our business. You think Gary Cooper did this or Marlene Dietrich . . . ? We’re film slaves.’”
  • Readers may be inspired to learn more about Riefenstahl, a very controversial artist and historical figure.

Praise & Reviews

Junior Library Guild

  • A fascinating fictionalized account of Sinti and Roma gypsies imprisoned by Nazis and forced to work for filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl. The focus on the gypsies, whose persecution by the Nazis is often overlooked, makes this a particularly compelling Holocaust novel.
  • Lilo, the story’s Sinti protagonist, is eminently sympathetic. She is brave and bold, suffering harrowing ordeals that include being separated from (and eventually losing) her father, and then her mother. More than once, she defies her oppressors to save her own life.
  • The book has an inherent tension that makes for a quick, absorbing read: Lilo’s life—like the rest of the gypsies’—is deemed cheap, and Riefenstahl is an unpredictable tyrant who can, and does, condemn people to death.
  • Provides insight and commentary on filmmaking’s pretenses, and how what is not shown can be as important as what is onscreen. As Lilo’s mother puts it: “‘This isn’t Hollywood, and we’re not extras. They lock the barn, remember? We bathe in the cow barn and go to latrines. We sit on rough boards to do our business. You think Gary Cooper did this or Marlene Dietrich . . . ? We’re film slaves.’”
  • Readers may be inspired to learn more about Riefenstahl, a very controversial artist and historical figure.

Grades 10 & Up
History High
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The past opens with a turn of the page in these fully-documented histories and compelling works of historical fiction. Experience the past frequently with the 12 books in this category.

12 books per Year
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Interests
Diversity,Fiction,Mature Readers,Nonfiction,Biographies,Realistic Fiction,History
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