A young boy and his mother and sister were separated from their father when the Berlin Wall was built between East and West Germany. This story shows the family’s struggle as they try to cross the wall so they can be together again. This spectacular book is based on true stories about the Berlin Wall.

One thought on “Wall

  1. Holly Johnson & Becca Gasiewicz says:

    Wall (Cole, 2014) is a fourth book that could be read through the lenses of thoughtfulness and resistance. From the United Kingdom, this narrative is about a young boy in East Berlin with his mother divided by the wall from his father in West Berlin. They were divided when the wall went up while his father was away. The boy hopes his dad will try to break through and rescue him, and explains how others have tried to escape to varying degrees of success or detriment. Determined to be reunited with his father, the boy begins to dig a tunnel under the wall, which must be dug in a field next to the wall. That field is the most dangerous part of the plan because it is patrolled by soldiers. The night he and his mother attempt to escape, they are helped by a soldier who sees the boy and his mother in the field. The family is reunited with the father, who was digging a tunnel of his own!
    The thoughtfulness of this book is easily spotted, but it is the varying layers of meaning that creates such a wonderful book. There is the political aspect of the narrative that older readers might want to explore while every reader might want to think about what they would do or continue to do to remain close to family members. In respect to the theme of resistance, the tunnels are the element of resistance and the “bolt cutters” in this story is the soldier who makes the decision to ignore the rules so the family can be reunited. The idea of humans as metaphorical “bolt cutters,” is one to ponder. What are you thinking, Becca?
    This story, like Rules of Summer, is told through the illustrations. The simplistic text allows this story to be read by all ages, with the depth of reading dependent upon the knowledge surrounding the Berlin Wall. What I am left to wonder, Holly, is the story of the helpful soldier. I am left curious about what caused him to let them through as he says to the young boy that nothing should keep a father apart from his family. Was he apart from his? It is an instant reminder of the people who are participating in roles we assume to be wrongful, yet they sometimes surprise us with their heartfelt actions.
    Wall is also a reminder of the many lives that are affected by politics and war. This young boy and his family are separated from their father and I appreciate the soldier’s realization that they should be together, as both were in search of the either. The darkness and light contrasting in the illustrations could also be representative of the darkness we feel when separated from love ones and the bright light shining through the door when they find their father demonstrating the brightness they feel once back together. I truly like this story and appreciate the availability of the story for all ages as they engage with history.

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