Tuesday, July 26, 2016
The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Peter Sis
Peter Sis is an artist who grew up in Czechoslovakia when the country was under the control of the Communist Soviet Union. Sis uses a graphic illustration style to tell fascinating, at times shocking, details about living under a dictatorship. For example, Peter could only draw what he wanted at home; the government determined what he could draw while he was in school. The book also includes snippets from the journal that Peter kept as a boy, giving readers an amazing first-hand account of this time period.
The Wall is an example of a picture book written for older students, preferably those who have been introduced to the Cold War and are interested in learning more through a first-hand account. I enjoyed reading about the Cold War era and found the format and the personal account so much more interesting than a history book. Be sure to read the introduction and the afterword; they help explain the Cold War time period more completely.
By Mrs. N.
P.S. The Wall won the Robert F. Sibert Medal and is a Caldecott Honor Book.