Monday, 30 November 2009

I am David by Anne Holm

We've just finished reading "I am David" by Anne Holm.  Glen read it aloud to us over the last two weeks.  We all really enjoyed it.  The author says,
"I wrote David, because it seemed to me that children, who can love a book more passionately than any grown person, got such a lot of harmless entertainment and not nearly enough real, valuable literature."
I am David was first written in Danish as David.  It tells the story of a twelve year old boy who has, for as long as he can remember, lived in a concentration camp in Eastern Europe.  One night he is given a chance to escape.  Deciding that a quick death would be better than the endless emptiness that stretches ahead of him in the camp, he follows the directions the man gave to him and to his surprise, finds himself on the other side of the walls, alive and free.

The rest of his book narrates his journey to safety; first South to Salonika and then North to Denmark (the book was published in the US as North to Freedom).  But it is not just a journey to safety.  It's a journey in which he wrestles with the demons of his past; of evil, brutality, mistrust and bitterness.  He discovers beauty, love, belonging, friendship and sacrifice.  It's a journey in which his broken spirit begins to heal and he finds hope for the future.

As the author says, it is truly a piece of valuable literature for children.  It inspired many meaningful conversations with our children, aged 5 and 7; including conversations about how we know God.  It is a veritable treasure.

No comments: