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I Am a Star: Child of the Holocaust Paperback – February 1, 1993


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I Am a Star: Child of the Holocaust + Survivors: True Stories of Children in the Holocaust + Four Perfect Pebbles: A Holocaust Story
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin (February 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140364013
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140364019
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #79,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This account of one girl's Holocaust experience is rich for its interweaving of autobiography and historical data. At age six, Auerbacher was forced to wear the yellow star that set her apart. Then she was sent to the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. Fifteen thousand children entered that camp, but only a hundred exited alive. And of more than 1000 people who arrived with Auerbacher, only 15 survived. It's a moving story supported by well-preserved wartime photographs and Bernbaum's harsh, spare drawings. The author's ability to survive is linked to her later capacity to translate hardship and tragedy into poetry of hope and perseverance. Her perspective, while chilling, pierces the heart with memorable imagery, such as envying the birds, which are free to fly away from the camp. Ages 11-up.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-6 Of the 15,000 children imprisoned in the Terezin concentration camp, only about 100 survived. Auerbacher was one of them, and she tells of her experiences in this brief memoir. Auerbacher's poems, incorporated into the text, are reminiscent of the writings in I Never Saw Another Butterfly: Children's Drawings and Poems from Terezin Concentration Camp 1942-1944 (Schocken, 1977). Both books give a child's perspective on the horrendous conditions in Theresienstadt without bitterness or pessimism. It isn't clear, though, whether Auerbacher's poems were written as a child or as an adult, and they are often awkwardly placed, interrupting the narrative. Bold roughly lined charcoal drawings and numerous black-and-white photographs are included. Bernbaum's drawings are neither as complex nor as symbolic as his oil paintings in My Brother's Keeper: the Holocaust Through the Eyes of an Artist (Putnam, 1985) but they do communicate the incidents described in the text and the poetry with emotional expression. In general, the illustrative material is not well reproduced. In spite of its flaws, this is a readable account that could be useful to children who have read Abells' The Children We Remember (Greenwillow, 1986), which is written on an easier level. Lorraine Douglas, Winnipeg Public Library, Manitoba, Canada
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

This is a very good book and an easy read!
Animal Lover
The book was excellent and should be available to most middle schoolers if not elementary school.
pawsitively geeky
Written very well and is greatly informative.
Benjamin Coles

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A. Luciano VINE VOICE on March 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
Inge is just a child living in a small village in Germany when Hitler rises to power. Like so many other Jewish families, her family did not escape from Germany soon enough to be safe. By the time they think to get out, it is too late. They are sent from place to place until they are finally deported to Terezin, a concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. Conditions there are horrible, and people live in constant fear of being shipped off to Auschwitz, where the gas chambers are.

Because Inge's father is a disabled war veteran, shot in the shoulder in World War I while fighting for Germany, the family has special priveleges in Terezin. Inge is able to stay with her mother and father, instead of being separated. However, the family is still fighting for survival, just like every other family in the camp.

Miraculously, Inge and her parents survive the Holocaust in Terezin. They live to be liberated and to start a new life in the United States after the war. This is one of few stories about the Holocaust with a relatively happy ending.

I liked that there was so much history included in this story. It isn't only Inge's story, but the story of the Holocaust in general. She tells of Hitler's rise to power and the other things that were going on right before she was sent to the concentration camp. I didn't like the inclusion of the poetry in the book. I felt like it broke up the flow of the story, because it often was in the middle of a page where the narrative was.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Gary Selikow on May 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
Inge Auerbacher was only three years old,in 1938, when the massive pogrom called Kristallnacht, or the Night of the Broken Glass took place.

At the age of seven she was sent to Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia.

In this incredible little book, Auerbacher tells of her experiences of being a little girl in Terezin concentration camp, one of the few young children who survived the death camps.

As she recounts:

"Of fifteen thousand children imprisoned in the Terezin concentration camps in Czechoslovakia, between 1941 and 1945, about one hundred survived. I am one of them. At least one and a half children were killed in the Nazi Holocaust. The reason most of these children died is that they were Jewish".

Auerbacher takes the horror of these years, and imparts a message of hope. She has created an account for young readers of her experiences, in a book filled with moving poetry and with the aid of haunting illustrations by Israel Bernbaum. There are also several photographs of her home town and of Inge as a child and her family life.

Auerbacher explains that the silent voices of the innocent children who died in the holocaust must be heard, and that is why felt compelled to trace the historical events that made this great evil possible and to tell her own story.

The author talks about her home town, Kippenheim, a village in southern Germany, where she was born in 1934.

She recounts the iddylic existance of her family and community in Kippenheim, until the horrific events of Kristallnacht.

She traces the roots of anti-Semitism for young readers, and summarizes the rise of Hitler, and the holocaust, before talking about her own story.

"We still feel the pain and we weep.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
In Inge Auerbacher's haunting memoir, she recalls the horrors perpetrated by the Nazis during the second World War. As a child, she saw her family imprisoned and witnessed firsthand the deaths of hundreds of thousands of her people. Though Auerbacher is frank in her account of the Holocaust, her optimism shines through in the beautiful poems that litter this work.
The book is short (about 80 pages) and the conversational tone makes it an easy read. "I Am a Star" should replace Anne Frank's diary as the authoritative classic on the Holocaust. My only complaint is that it wasn't longer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By kindred spirit VINE VOICE on September 1, 2008
Format: Paperback
Inge was 3 yrs old on Nov, 9 1938, when the Night of the Broken Glass took place. She was six when she was forced to wear the yellow star....then it really got bad.

At seven she was sent to Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. Inge got to live with her Mother and father due to the fact that her father was a decorated war hero from WWI. She is one of the few children to survive the camp.

All thru her journeys she has her doll with her which is a miracle as most of the time the Jews got to keep nothing of their fromer lives. The doll is now in the National Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C.

Inga tells us what it was like being a little girl in Terezin concentration camp. If her families name had not been circled on the list of the last transport out of Terezin she would not be here today.

I love that Inge includes some pictures of herself and family in the book. It really helps you connect with her.
I so could FEEL everything she describes.

When Inge and her family were liberated she finally got to be a child. She wanted to play with dolls when other girls were growing out of dolls. But she had not gotten to be a child. Her young childhood was in hiding and just staying alive. Watching other children for payment of a potato which was a treasure.

Inga expains anti-Semitism for young readers, and why Hitler so hated the Jews. As an adult it is the best explaination I have ever heard. Though to me it is so unbelievable how anyone could think this way.

She includes also poetry she has written in the book.

After being so moved by the book I went to her website listed in the book. I wrote to Inge and she wrote back. What a treasure she is.
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More About the Author

I was born in Kippenheim, a village in southern Germany. I was imprisoned in the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia between 7-10 years of age. I came to the USA in 1946 and have since then lived in NYC. I graduated with a BS degree in chemistry, and worked for 38 years as a chemist in research and clinical work. I speak all over the USA, Germany about the Holocaust diversity , love and respect for all to any age group. I received the "Louis E. Yavner Citizen Award," "Ellis Island Medal of Honor," and an hon. "Doctor of Humane Letters" from Long Island University.

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