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Run, Boy, Run by Uri Orlev
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Run, Boy, Run

by Uri Orlev

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Based on true events, Run, Boy, Run is gripping. The action never stops, and readers will be anxious to see what happens next. It is also quite emotional for the more sensitive reader. Older children will appreciate the complexity of the story, characters that are not necessarily “good” or “bad”. This book will have children making predictions about what will happen next, who Srulik/Jurek can trust, and what he should do to survive. ( )
2 vote KhrystiBooks | Jun 25, 2010 |
When eight-year-old Srulik’s family is killed by Nazis, he escapes into the Polish countryside, taking heed of his father’s direction to not let anyone know he’s Jewish. Although this is written for a younger reader and the pacing is very repetitive at times, I enjoyed reading about this young boy's experiences running from the Nazis in WWII Poland. The stakes are very high (life and death), and Srulik's persona is probable and likeable. The real clincher of the story is, of course, that it is based on a person that Uri Orlev met in real life. ( )
  -Eva- | Nov 17, 2009 |
In this novel based on a Holocaust survivor's account, Srulik, a nine-year-old boy on the run in the Polish countryside, learns from his encounters with an assortment of strangers that he cannot reveal himself as Jew. Part of the strength of Orlev's writing rests with its spareness: like his protagonist, Orlev does not waste words; he resists embellishment. We learn what happens, but we must construct our feelings about those happenings for ourselves. "In daytime, he rarely thought of his friends or felt lonely. He was too busy looking for food and water and observing everything around him." A likable redhead, Jewish Srulik transforms himself into orphaned Christian Jurek, winning the hearts of the many Poles who decide to take him in. In a scene of surreal horror, Srulik sees his father hiding in a potato field, also on the run in the countryside. His father admonishes him to stay alive, to adopt Christian ways, to forget everything except that he is a Jew; his father then sacrifices his life to save his son's. Orlev shows the reader how well Srulik learns his father's lesson to stay alive, but also how resistant he is -- how painful it is -- to remember his Jewishness once the war ends. Orlev does not indulge us in feelings even when Srulik must have his arm amputated because a Christian doctor had earlier refused him treatment. Recounting how Srulik reconnects with his past and his Jewishness may be Orlev's greatest triumph in this novel of heartbreaking resilience.
Run, Boy, Run., By: Bloom, Susan P., Horn Book Magazine, 00185078, Nov/Dec2003, Vol. 79, Issue 6 ( )
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  montereyhat | Jun 27, 2007 |
8 year-old Srulik Frydman, who is Jewish, must survive in war torn Poland, lie about his religion, change his name, and forget about his family. This award-winning fictional account of a young man’s extraordinary journey is both shocking and heart-felt. After getting separated from his mother in the Warsaw ghetto, Srulik leaves the city to survive in the countryside of Poland. The one thing he remembers is to stay alive – no matter what. Uri Orlev, a Holocaust survivor himself, has taken an innovative approach to the Jewish experience during WW II. He realistically portraits the experiences Srulik, now Jurek, endures. At times, he hides in the forest and steals sausages, or kills wild birds for a meal. At other times he is taken in by a farming family as a shepherd or hired hand. No place is permanent because he has to hide his heritage at any cost. Orlev explores the worst and best of human kind – from the kindness of Polish farmers, to the ruthlessness of the Nazi doctor who refuses to operate on Jurek’s arm. Jurek is beaten, is homeless and alone, and looses an arm; despite it all, the novel sends a message that regardless of the circumstances, the righteous soul of an innocent child will prevail over the darkest hand of evil. A novel about surviving against all odds that should be part of every Holocaust Unit, and one that everyone should read. 2003, Houghton Mifflin Co, $15.00. Ages 10 and up. Batchelder Honor Book.
Batchelder Award Winner
  KRaimont | May 21, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0618957065, Paperback)

“'Srulik, there’s no time. I want you to remember what I’m going to tell you. You have to stay alive. You have to! Get someone to teach you how to act like a Christian, how to cross yourself and pray. . . . The most important thing, Srulik,' he said, talking fast, 'is to forget your name. Wipe it from your memory. . . . But even if you forget everything—even if you forget me and Mama—never forget that you’re a Jew.'"

And so, at only eight years old, Srulik Frydman says goodbye to his father for the last time and becomes Jurek Staniak, an orphan on the run in the Polish countryside at the height of the Holocaust. With the danger of capture by German soldiers ever-present, Jurek must fight against starvation, the punishing Polish winters, and widespread anti-Semitism as he desperately searches for refuge. Told with the unflinching honesty and unique perspective of such a young child, Run, Boy, Run is the extraordinary account of one boy’s struggle to stay alive in the face of almost insurmountable odds—a story all the more incredible because it is true.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:23:45 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Based on the true story of a nine-year-old boy who escapes the Warsaw Ghetto and must survive throughout the war in the Nazi-occupied Polish countryside.

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