Saturday, March 11, 2017

MMGM (3/13/2017): The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

For MMGM, I am recommending The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley.




One of the most tragic yet overlooked problems in our world is child abuse, and, although The War that Saved My Life is set during World War II, this is simply the front for a saddening yet ultimately hopeful (and amazing) story. The main character, Ada, was born with a clubfoot (which is basically a disfigured foot). However, her mother never had the foot fixed, and she instead treated Ada as disabled, never letting her out of their apartment and often beating her or locking her in the "cabinet." Ada and her little brother, Jamie, end up leaving when their home of London is deemed unsafe and likely to be bombed, and they are given to a woman named Susan Smith, sharing the children's last name. This seems symbolic of the bond that soon forms, as Susan, although never having children or wanting to, grows to love the children, just as they begin to love her. Ada soon discovers what the world is like, and she is also conflicted, feeling at first like she is worthless because of her foot, which is what her mother ingrained in her, showing how abused kids cannot just easily decide that their parents are wrong. Ada eventually begins to become happier, learning to ride a horse and befriending several kids. Susan has her own problems as well, dealing with the loss of her best friend, roommate, and only real ally in the world. This book is so amazing that this review does not do it justice. Whether being read by a kid, a class, or an adult, it is incredibly touching, certainly deserving the Newbery Honor it has won.

10 comments:

  1. This sounds amazing! Thank you for recommending it - can't wait to read it!

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  2. Sounds like a sad story to begin with, but glad Ada found a better home and happiness. Sorry that Susan has gone through so much too. Thanks for sharing this one.

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  3. I've heard of this one, but your insights added more depth to my understanding. I'll add it to my list of books to read and hopefully get to it by summer. Thanks for the review.

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  4. Once again, this book is thrust upon me, and I say with great embarrassment that I have not yet read it. Thanks for the kick in the pants.

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  5. I really loved this one. Such an emotional story with lots of layers.

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  6. For someone like me who has trouble naming favorites among so many marvelous books, this one makes it onto my list easily. It is terrific as a read-aloud/discussion group with kids of the target age.

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  7. I also loved this book. It's one of those I read last summer and never got a chance to review, but parts of the story have stayed with me.

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  8. This has been one of my very favorite MG reads in the past few years. I'd pick it up and read it again. The story is heartbreaking and beautiful. Excellent review!

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  9. This was a beautiful, touching story. I thought it was wonderful. Thanks for spreading the word!
    - Vi

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  10. This has circulated well with my 8th grade girls who like really sad books, but mainly when they are forced to read books set during WWII.

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