You can read more book reviews or buy Once by Morris Gleitzman at Amazon.
I loved it, it is one of those books you can read again and again. However, Felix saved her and she stayed with him. If your child is particularly sensitive, read it with them.It's not the starvation and depletion of souls. But when the Nazis do come to the orphanage and they do burn books, Felix knows he has to do something. His parents are booksellers, you see. Then there were the subsequent books - Then and Now It's gentle, and humane, and ordinary, Once, even though its subject is the violent, the inhumane, and the twisted. A crushing book. But then, the Nazis come. Just, why. Once was like this but also had comical and happy moments mixed in. There is plenty of page-turning action and even though it is very moving it is also funny at times. It's disgraceful how much she had been through just at that age, and many other real people too. This something adult can attest that they have as much to offer the grown-up as they do child, in some ways, perhaps, even more. Anyway, that lovely line was in this book too, BUT not as much and I actually started really connecting with Zelda too, especially when she became a different person - Violetta I really like that name actually.
It's not the open massacre of children. I think I preferred this book to the first and definitely enjoyed it more because of this.
You never expect anything that happens. But what is most precious is the innocence of this young lad let's call him William, but I am whispering to you with fear in my heart that his real name is Felix - the wide-eyed purity of belief that his parents will be back for him.But when the Nazis do come to the orphanage and they do burn books, Felix knows he has to do something. Then there was Once. How - in all of heaven and earth - my young daughter's year 4 teacher held herself together long enough to read this book to her class, I will never, in all my born days understand - because I'm a blubbering fool right now just writing this review. I think it's better if you did though, you have a total understanding of the pain and suffering they went through, and the back story of how they met one another. I wept like a destitute waif, but I got through it and I have never been more glad of any book read in my life. This book is very different to Once. You'll see the Amazon link above takes you to a volume in which Once and its sequel Then are published together.
And that laughter is desperately needed as a catharsis, because of course, Felix gets a great deal wrong.