Books, Read + Review, School, Teen Reviews

Read+Review: Mapping the Bones by Jane Yolen


Set in the Holocaust in Poland, 1942, Mapping the Bones is a stirring novel in which twins, Chaim and Gittel, are forced to leave their cozy home and live in the Lodz Ghetto. The story centers around Chaim and Gittel, who have immeasurable love for each other. Eventually, The twins and their parents have to share their small home and food with the Norenbergs, another Jewish family. Everything starts falling apart, except for the connection between Chaim and Gittel. Filled with sentimental decisions and tough struggles during the Holocaust, the book was definitely worth reading.

Mapping the bones is an accurate representation of the holocaust, but it is still intriguing and fun to read. The characters in the book, particularly the twins were easily my favorite component. The story emphasized how their bond would stay strong no matter what. I appreciate how Jane Yolen kept a light and calm writing style, even while the story was bold and emotional. With frequent plot twists and new situations, the book was both educational and thrilling.

One thing I will never forget about this book is the secret sign language that the twins use among themselves. Even though Chaim has trouble speaking, Gittel always knows what he is thinking. Even their parents do not know what they are conveying to each other.


Saarthak Sangwan, 8th grade – Moody Middle School, Twin Hickory Library

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