The Girl in the Green Sweater
Krystyna Chiger and Daniel Paisner
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Buy *The Girl in the Green Sweater: A Life in Holocaust's Shadow* by Krystyna Chiger and Daniel Paisner online

The Girl in the Green Sweater: A Life in Holocaust's Shadow
Krystyna Chiger and Daniel Paisner
St. Martin's Griffin
304 pages
February 2012
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

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On May 30, 1943, Krystyna Chiger and her family escaped the final liquidation (the last action by the Germans to kill the Jews) by living in the sewers of Lvov, Poland.

Before they found “the Palace,” where they spent the majority of their fourteen months underground, they stood in a foot of raw sewage, surrounded by thousands of worms and rats. Chiger says, “It was worse than our worst nightmare, and we were living inside of it.” Although she was only seven at the time, her memories are numerous and detailed. She remembers what happened to the baby that was born in the sewers and how they escaped a fire and a flood that nearly took their lives.

She writes with courage and honesty when she describes the hardships her family faced before and after the liberation. There were times she was angry and times she managed to laugh. But mostly, she lived in fear. Only ten people left the sewers alive on July 27, 1944. Although she has no single answer to why they lived, the reasons she does give also seem to answer a question Krystyna’s father asked during this time period: “How do you do your best when all around you are the worst?”

The eight pages of black-and-white illustrations include pictures of family, as well as strangers who became lifelong friends. This true story, which was made into the movie In Darkness, is an important part of history. It should be in every library.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Tanya Boudreau, 2012

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