Once by Morris Gleitzman

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Synopsis

Felix, a Jewish boy in Poland in 1942, is hiding from the Nazis in a Catholic orphanage. The only problem is that he doesn't know anything about the war, and thinks he's only in the orphanage while his parents travel and try to salvage their bookselling business. And when he thinks his parents are in danger, Felix sets off to warn them--straight into the heart of Nazi-occupied Poland. To Felix, everything is a story: Why did he get a whole carrot in his soup? It must be sign that his parents are coming to get him. Why are the Nazis burning books? They must be foreign librarians sent to clean out the orphanage's outdated library. But as Felix's journey gets increasingly dangerous, he begins to see horrors that not even stories can explain.Despite his grim suroundings, Felix never loses hope. Morris Gleitzman takes a painful subject and expertly turns it into a story filled with love, friendship, and even humor.
 

About Morris Gleitzman

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Morris Gleitzman has been a sugar-mill employee, frozen-chicken defroster, fashion-industry trainee, department-store Santa, and screenwriter, among other things. Now he's one of Australia's best-loved children's book authors, with books published worldwide.
 
Published March 30, 2010 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR). 164 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Education & Reference, Religion & Spirituality. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Once

Kirkus Reviews

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When his Jewish parents place young Felix in an orphanage in war-torn Poland, they tell him that they must leave to fix their book business.

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The Guardian

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Once and Then by Morris Gleitzman Find this on the Guardian bookshop Search the Guardian bookshop Morris Gleitzman's novella opens with the most memorable gruel sce...

Aug 22 2009 | Read Full Review of Once

The Guardian

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Once and Then by Morris Gleitzman Find this on the Guardian bookshop Search the Guardian bookshop Two short novels originally aimed at teenagers, dealing with the s...

Aug 23 2009 | Read Full Review of Once

Publishers Weekly

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Tension builds swiftly in this wrenching tale as Felix, a preteen Polish Jew, narrates his experience of Holocaust atrocities, framed by a search for his parents that begins when he escapes from a Catholic orphanage.

Mar 08 2010 | Read Full Review of Once

Suite 101

During a heated moment, a man slaps a three year old boy who is not his son, nor a relation of his.

Jun 28 2010 | Read Full Review of Once

Historical Novel Society

With Felix, a 14-year-old Polish Jewish boy, the reader witnesses terrifying, incomprehensible incidents, but as Felix grows in understanding he realizes the truth behind the events.

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Historical Novel Society

The ending is abrupt as Felix, a diverse and motivated character full of charm, intelligence and bravery is deprived of Now – the third story he so richly deserves.

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Historical Novel Society

This book isn’t like the other Morris Gleitzman books I know, but I do think that it is a fantastic book for children to read and learn about the 2nd World War and a different insight into life as a Jew in Nazi Germany.

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BookRack

It’s a great book for middle grade children and informing them about the Holocaust through the point of view of a child.

Aug 31 2011 | Read Full Review of Once

Reader Rating for Once
90%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 84 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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