Summary

Felix lives in a convent orphanage high in the mountains in Poland. He is convinced his parents are still alive and that they will one day come back to get him. When Nazi soldiers come to the orphanage Felix decides to escape and make his way home. The journey to find his parents is a long and difficult one, as all of Poland is occupied by the Nazis and a dangerous place for a Jewish boy. Felix manages to live and look after himself and another orphan, Zelda, with the help of a kind dentist, Barney, who is hiding and looking after a number of Jewish children. When the Nazis discover them, Barney makes the ultimate sacrifice for the children, electing to go with them on the train to the death camps, rather than taking the option of freedom offered by a Nazi soldier, one of his grateful patients.
©2005 Morris Gleitzman (P)2005 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.
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Critic reviews



2005 Audie Award Nominee, Children's Titles, Ages 8+
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By zrh2 on 30-08-18

A moving, emotional tale.

The author has crafted this book extremely well, unrolling the answers to the readers' questions as they form in their minds, like dangling a large carrot in front of them. Easy to read level-wise, but definitely not easy to read. I would recommend to mature year 6 children(age 11) and above. An excellent listen.

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4 out of 5 stars
By Vee on 03-08-18

Didn't realise it was a children's book but still

A great read. Well developed the characters in what are unimaginable circumstances. Good book to teach children about a personal perspective of this period in history.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Denis on 04-03-06

once ..loved by all

i bought this book for my 11 yr old boy
who loved it but the person who really adored it
was my 8 yr old niece who listened it to over and over again.
this story really captured her imagination.

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3 of 4 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Laura on 29-12-14

Such a sad story

What did you love best about Once?

That the boy tried to write stories about his experiences.

What other book might you compare Once to and why?

The boy in the striped pajamas

What does Morris Gleitzman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

It was more sad I think listening to it. If I'd been reading it I'd not have finished it.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Cry cry. Laugh a little then cry some more.

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