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Hello, America


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Gr. 9-12. Elli Friedman's bond with her mother is as close as when they protected each other in Auschwitz and survived the refugee camps. Now they move in with family in Brooklyn, and Elli slowly finds friends, love, and work, always sustained by her Orthodox Judaism. There's too much of the daily detail for many readers, but Elli's "greenhorn" mistakes are funny, and her romance with Alex is bittersweet--he needs her to be a helpless immigrant; but she wants to make her own way as a teacher. Most powerful is her survivor experience, told with terse understatement in the present-tense narrative. Haunted by horror, guilt, and grief, she is shocked to find prejudice in America; even Jews don't want to know about the Holocaust, so she must hide the number tattooed on her arm. Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details


Those who were riveted by I Have Lived a Thousand Years and My Bridges of Hope, which chronicled Livia Bitton-Jackson's personal story of being imprisoned in Auschwitz at age 13, will cheer the final book of her trilogy, Hello, America. Readers watch Elli and her mother depart Europe for Brooklyn in 1951; the author brings equal insight to the adjustments required to settle into new surroundings, as well as to more universal experiences such as finding a job and falling in love. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

"Those who were riveted by "I Have Lived a Thousand Years" and "My Bridges of Hope" . . . will cheer the final book of [Bitton-Jackson's] trilogy." -- "Publishers Weekly" "Those who were riveted by I Have Lived a Thousand Years and My Bridges of Hope . . . will cheer the final book of [Bitton-Jackson's] trilogy." -- Publishers Weekly "Most powerful is [Elli's] survivor experience, told with terse understatement in the present-tense narrative." -- Booklist

Gr 7 Up-This is the final title in the Czech-born author's autobiographical trilogy describing her teen years before, during, and after the Holocaust [I Have Lived a Thousand Years (1997) and My Bridges of Hope (1999, both S & S)]. In 1951, Elli and her mother sailed off to New York. Still shaken from their harrowing experiences during the war and the loss of her father, the 18-year-old was fragile, innocent, yet hopeful as she stepped onto American soil. She was determined to finish her education and become a teacher, fulfilling her father's dreams. Readers get a detailed account of the many challenges she faced. First impressions of assimilated relatives, a supermarket, Brooklyn College, and tuna fish and milkshakes capture her awe and excitement. There is also disillusionment when the greenhorns leave their full shopping cart outside unattended only to find it stolen, or when Elli gets labeled a tease at summer camp for misinterpreting sexual advances. Still, humor and romance softened a tragic past. The writing is at times melodramatic, and, while this engaging memoir reads like a novel, certain characters or events seem random-as in real life. Nonetheless, this is a satisfying portrait of coming-of-age in 1950s Brooklyn.-Barbara Auerbach, New York City Public Schools Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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