Behind the Bookcase
19 Oct. 2020
Miep Gies, who as a girl was a refugee during World War I, recognized that Europe again became a dark place under the Nazis.
With bravery and loyalty, Miep helped to shelter Anne Frank's family, preserving the great legacy of Anne's diary.
InformationBook Type: Picture Books
Age Group: 7 to 11 years
Class Novel: No
Good Reads Rating: /5
Literary Rating: /5
This picture book is based on Miep Gies's autobiography Anne Frank Remembered: the story of the woman who helped to hide the Frank family. As a child she was saved from starvation in Austria by a Dutch family, who fostered her. Later in life, Miep went to work for Anne Frank's father, Otto. She helped to hide the Frank family and others in the "annex" above Otto's company's office space.
During the Nazi occupation, she did her best to find food for the people in the annex. One night she stays with them, and gains an understanding of the dread they all felt. Though the people in the annex are eventually discovered, Miep keeps Anne's diary safe in the hope that she can return it to her. Otto survived internment and went on to publish Anne's diary.
An interesting perspective on a heartbreaking story. Miep's compassion and determination to help others is inspiring. It can be difficult to imagine what life was like in the annex, but through Miep's eyes, readers may gain some understanding.
An author's note, photographs, and reference list are included at the end of the book.
This is a great resource to start discussions on different historical perspectives and the importance of preserving primary sources.
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