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Traitor by Gudrun Pausewang

Traitor (2006)

by Gudrun Pausewang

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575293,463 (3.59)3
  1. 00
    The Invention of Curried Sausage by Uwe Timm (meggyweg)
    meggyweg: While one is for adults and the other for teens, both books center around a Russian soldier hiding in Germany during World War II.
  2. 00
    Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene (bethielouwho)

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Showing 5 of 5
Unfortunately this one didn't quite live up to my expectations. Too much telling rather than showing, and a lot of heavy-handed moralizing. None of the characters are likable or have any depth. The narration is much too simplistic and childish, which makes the handling of the very mature themes clumsy and ineffective. Disappointing. ( )
  9inchsnails | Mar 7, 2016 |
-!Spoiler Alert!-

"Traitor" is a wonderfully written novel by Gudrun Pausewang about a girl named Anna in Nazi German times. She finds an escaped and injured Russian prisoner in her barn and first mistakes him for a mentally-ill lunatic. Later, Anna finds out who he really is and is faced with a conflict: if she lets him go, he will die, but if she keeps him safe, she could be shot for treason. Anna decides to keep him safe and guide him to an abandoned barracks and secretly cares for him. Meanwhile, her younger brother Felix is part of the Hitler Youth program and all he wants to do is protect Germany. If he finds out what Anna is doing, he would betray his sister. Anna continues to care for the Russian soldier even though Felix is growing suspicious. The Russian soldier eventually heals and Anna escorts him to the Russian camp outside her town. Just as the soldier sees is old friends, Felix arrives and fires his weapon at both the Russian and Anna. The story ends with Anna discovering that the Russian is dead.

This book was very riveting. I didn't want to EVER put it down because it was so suspenseful and intriguing! The only thing that upset me was that the ending was shocking and sad. I became emotional when the Russian died. I am not fond of sad books, but nevertheless, I really found it an enjoyable read. It was very well-written and a good suggestion for grades 7 and 8. I hope to read more of Pausewang's books! ( )
  MeganS.B3 | Aug 28, 2014 |
Another stunning World War II novel from Pausewang. ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
Originally translated from German in 2004, Traitor by Gudrun Pausewang is the story of a German girl named Anna who discovers an escaped POW (Prisoner of War) from the Eastern Front, where Germany is fighting the Soviet Union. Anna helps the man by showing him a safe shelter and by giving him food, clothes, and other necessities. As the war comes to an end, the Russians advance toward her village in Eastern Germany (Steignitz). A flood of fleeing German soldiers and civilians living in the path of the Russian invaders sweeps through her village on their way to the West, and freedom (Historical note: As the Germans had invaded Russia already and left destruction in their wake, the Germans knew that the Russians would be more than eager to return the favor. Most German soldiers and civilians knew that they would receive much better treatment at the hands of the Americans and British, as opposed to the Russians, so they tried to escape to the relative safety of the West, where the British and American armies fought.) Few people remain loyal to Hitler anymore, aside from Anna's brother Felix. He is a member of the Hitlerjugend ("Hitler Youth" in English--boys who are trained to fight for the German army), and wants to fight the enemies of Germany more than anything else. Anna is worried that Felix's blind devotion to his leader could lead to catastrophe.
When I first picked up this book, I thought it showed lots of promise. The story of a German girl caught between patriotism and morals seemed interesting, and I was eager to start it. When I finished, I was very disappointed. The book had no real ending: it ended suddenly (without an epilogue) in the middle of the climax. The author also tried to put a lot of emotion into the book, but couldn't make the characters seem real. For example, Anna gets so mad, she kills a dog with a rock. No normal person would do that, but the writer thought that that event could have happened. I would not recommend this book to anyone who likes action or suspense, as neither of those is present in this book. ( )
  ahsreads | Nov 30, 2012 |
It was very well translated, on an interesting topic and interesting description. It was very enthralling. The topic interests me. I love Russia and it was translated; I love foreign books. AHS/MM
  edspicer | May 19, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gudrun Pausewangprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ward, RachelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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During the closing months of World War II, a fifteen-year-old German girl must decide whether or not to help an escaped Russian prisoner of war, despite the serious consequences if she does so.

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