My name is Nico and I’m not much of a reader. I never really was into reading a lot but I have read my fair share. In high school, I developed a real interest in classical novels. It wasn’t just because classics were highly encouraged by my literature teacher but I also found a great deal of interest in them. That being said, when I read, I usually read a classic but I also have read more modern novels.
The novel I chose to analyze was Number The Stars by Lois Lowry. I chose this book because when I read the recommendation Sean Pua wrote, the first thing that caught my eye was life during WWII. I always enjoy putting myself in someone else’s shoes so what a great adventure I would have if I put myself in the shoes of a 10 year old girl experiencing life during such a chaotic and miserable time.
Lois Lowry was born on March 20, 1937 in Honolulu, Hawaii. She is an American writer who is famous mostly for her children’s novels. As a child, she moved quite a bit living in over 5 different countries because her dad was an officer in the army. I believe this is how she was able to really connect more to Annmarie in Number The Stars. Her two most famous novels are Number The Stars (1989) and The Giver (1993) because with these two books, she won the Newbery Medal twice. There isn’t much of a connection with her and the book but she did go to Copenhagen, Denmark to interview tons of people about their experiences so that she could have a deeper understanding and a better point of view on how things happened during that time.
The novel was set in Denmark in 1943. During this time, Denmark wasn’t a great place to be in. The Germans were pretty much everywhere and it was very hard for people, especially Jewish people to live their everyday lives. The novel shifts from place to place because the characters continue to move around. They’re forced to move around because the Germans, during that time, were after them (in general).
Exposition: This is when we, the readers, get to know the two main characters, Annmarie and Ellen. We get to know about who they are, how old they are, and soon enough how affected they’ll be with what is yet to come in the latter parts of the novel.
Rising Action: This is when the guards stop both Annmarie and Ellen. The novel really starts picking up pace at this point because this is when we realize that these kids are living their lives during such a dark time in history and only at that point in time, things started happening all the way in Denmark.
Climax: This is when they had to move from the city to the countryside. This was especially exciting because at any moment, they could’ve gotten caught and killed or even worse, tortured. Although, another point in the novel could be considered as well for the climax, which was the part when Annmarie had to walk to the boat on her own with a “secret” package to deliver it to Henrik in his boat. The nazi soldiers with dogs stop Annmarie and this is where you have to imagine what she was going through at that very moment.
Falling Action: This is when we find out that everyone is safe for the most part. Annmarie and Henrik made it home safely and Ellen and her family made it to Sweden safely. The falling action wouldn’t be complete without some sort of explanation for what had just happened in the story. In this case, Henrik explains to Annmarie what exactly she delivered and how heroic it was of her to do it for everyone.
Conclusion: This is when the bad guys start retreating and WWII finally comes to an end. Ellen and her family can return soon from Sweden and Annmarie and her family is safe and sound.
Annmarie Johansen- She is the 10 year old girl who is the main character of the book. She, along with Ellen and their families experience life during WWII.
Ellen Rosen- The best friend of Annmarie. They go to the same school together and they are very close. Being an only child, she is more serious about school and always wanted to become an actress.
Mrs. Johansen-She is the mom of Annmarie. She is also very brave because she almost risked her life just to save her children.
Peter Neilsen- He was the fiance of the eldest sister of Annmarie, Lise. He was also a part of the resistance that fought against the Germans.
Henrik- Mrs. Johansen’s brother and also a smuggler. He played a huge role in the movel because he smuggled Ellen and her family safely to Sweden.
Mr Johansen- The father of Annmarie and also very proud of his country.
Lise-The eldest sister of Annmarie. We find out that she did die earlier because of the work she did with the resistance.
There was one clear kind of conflict that I saw and that was Man vs. Society. I know how cliched that sounds but it is what it is. It was Annmarie going against society or the Germans because they seemed to dictate what exactly needed to be done and how to handle things.
In this novel, there’s a third person omniscient limited because we know exactly what Annmarie knows. Nothing more and nothing less.
Star of David- This symbol appears quite a number of times in this novel. Annmarie also has a necklace with the Star of David. She wears this to symbolize her loyalty to her friend and her stand against the Germans.
The Woods-It symbolizes the passageway of Annmarie from child to woman because during the time when she passed through the woods, she went through a transportation.
The main theme that I could get from this novel is that it’s difficult growing up. Growing up is the time one finds their identity and who they really are but mix that with what was happening in the novel just gives you the best kind of conflict there is.
Literature, tio me, is exercise for the mind. I say this because there are times in the day when we just zoom in and out of the day so rarely do you practice your mind. Literature allows you to do just that which is working your mind out properly.
Thank you everyone who has took the time to read this post! :)