Featured Book of the Month

Lorelei A., Co-Editor in Chief

In honor of the Holocaust unit eighth graders are going through, this month’s F.B.O.T.M. is Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz. I have to admit, I did discover this book through ROAR, but I was not disappointed. Prisoner B-3087 is based of the true life story of Yanek Gruener, who later became known as Jack Gruener when he moved to the United States, and we follow him through the story as he gives us a first-person account of the Holocaust.

In the beginning, Yanek is a young boy of ten living with his family in the Polish city of Kraków. After a rather normal family dinner and games that preceded it, a voice comes through on the radio warning them that the Germans have reached their city. This message would have been somewhat meaningless, but there was one problem: they were Jewish. Caught off guard, the family has barely any time to collect themselves.

In hindsight, Yanek wishes he had took his family and run, but they were trapped. As the story progresses, Yanek and his family experience the horrors of living in what was dubbed a “Jewish ghetto.” Later on, they would be brought to several concentration camps, including the infamous Auschwitz.

Prisoner B-3087 is an eye-opening read, and a great option for current and future eighth graders. It’s difficult to put it down, and you become immersed in the horrific events of the Holocaust: the perfect mix of educational and captivating.