RESISTANCE, by Jennifer A. Nielsen, Scholastic Press, Aug. 28, 2018, Hardcover, $17.99 (ages 8 and up)
Resistance, by Jennifer A. Nielsen, is an intense World War II read full of tension and action.
Chaya Lindner is a teenager living in Nazi-occupied Poland. Simply being Jewish places her in danger of being killed or sent to the camps. After her little sister is taken away, her younger brother disappears, and her parents all but give up hope, Chaya is determined to make a difference. Using forged papers and her fair features, Chaya becomes a courier and travels between the Jewish ghettos of Poland, smuggling food, papers, and even people.
Soon Chaya joins a resistance cell that runs raids on the Nazis’ supplies. But after a mission goes terribly wrong, Chaya’s network shatters. She is alone and unsure of where to go, until Esther, a member of her cell, finds her and delivers a message that chills Chaya to her core, and sends her on a journey toward an even larger uprising in the works — in the Warsaw Ghetto. —Synopsis provided by Scholastic Press
Resistance is historical fiction at its finest. Not only does Jennifer A Nielsen bring events of WWII straight into your home, she also celebrates the resiliency of the human spirit in the worst of circumstances.
This is not Jennifer’s first foray into historical fiction. In 2015 she released A Night Divided, about the Berlin Wall, to great acclaim. Like A Night Divided, Resistance is perfect for a movie, book or play. Jennifer’s plotting is spot on and her characters are flawed but perfectly suited.
When reading Resistance, I actually forgot I was reading middle grade. It felt more young adult to me, but as an adult I was equally caught up in the story. It’s OK for younger, more mature readers, but I would definitely choose to read it with my daughter, at least the first time.
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