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The Eighth-Grade History Class Visits the Hebrew Home for the Aging

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  91 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Some people will tell you that world-class fame is better than living to a contented old age. Other people disagree. One of those other people might possibly be the protagonist of The Eighth-Grade History Class Visits the Hebrew Home for the Aging by Harry Turtledove, master of the counterfactual.

At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights M
ebook, 32 pages
Published January 8th 2014 by Tor Books
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ by: karen
Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature:

It has a pedestrian title, but this short story is anything but. As usual for Harry Turtledove, it’s alternative history; as not so usual for him, it’s a subtle, understated tale. The plot of this story is … well, exactly what the title would indicate. A class of thirteen- and fourteen-year-olds visits 84 year old Mrs. Anne Berkowitz in a California old folks home, to hear her tell her story about her experiences in WWII.

The story begins with smal
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it

A garden stretched between her residence block and the dining hall. The same warm, bright, San Fernando Valley sunshine that had woken her poured down on it. A scrub jay in a pale-leaved olive tree screeched at her: “Jeep! Jeep! Jeep!” Anne smiled. The bird figured the garden belonged to it.

i'm glad i finally got around to reading this one. (so i guess there's a silver lining to tor not putting up any new free shorts?? any info on that situation would be greatly appreciated.) but not only does t
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, free, short-story
An interesting piece on human character through history and the distance a person has from a lack of personal experience.
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Cute. Very cute.
I kinda suspected the ending (and I think that had I read the book, I would've picked up on the clues much earlier than I did).
Nov 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: short-freebie
Not bad, but I figured out the twist early on and it didn’t do much for me. Nice thought, but ended up depressing, as reality was less kind. 3 solid stars.
Rebecca Crunden
“We had to wear yellow stars on our clothes, with Jood on them. That’s Jew in Dutch,” Anne said. “We couldn’t use trams. We had to give up our bicycles. We weren’t allowed to ride in cars. We had to shop late in the afternoon, when there was next to nothing left to buy. We couldn’t even visit Christians in their houses or apartments. We couldn’t go out at all from eight at night to six in the morning. We had to go to only Jewish schools and Jewish barbers and Jewish beauty parlors. We couldn’t u ...more
Jan 08, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The publisher calls Harry Turtledove, "the master of the counterfactual". I always thought he specialized in alternative history, but I like that label.

For all that The Diary of Anne Frank left indelible marks on so many of us, can anybody say the world would not have been a better place if she'd survived the war?
Feb 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Really cool. A well-conceived and written contemporary tale bringing the experience of Jews under the Nazis into today.

If I tell you the spoiler, it's . . . well, it'll spoil the story. I'm telling you too much by telling you there is a spoiler.

Read and enjoy. It's only 17 pages.
Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I haven't read Harry Turtledove before, his books don't tend to appeal to me. However the title to this short story drew me in on the blog which I obsessively follow plus Anne Frank has always been of a certain interest to me. Then the concept grabbed me.

Its always a tragic thing when a child dies--whether its from something as horrific as WWII and the surrounding insanity therein or an illness, people tend to react more strongly to a child. Add in Anne's diary, which at the time it was
Jul 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
If you're unfamiliar with Harry Turtledove, it's worth knowing that he makes his bread-and-butter with Alternate History. I won't spoil anything about the story, but this short work explores the ramifications of a single change in a lovely and sweet way. ...more
Paulo Vinicius Figueiredo dos Santos
Contar uma história alternativa é uma arte hoje dominada por poucos. Infelizmente pouco conhecido no Brasil, Harry Turtledove é uma lenda e um mestre na arte de brincar com o "e se...". Profundo pesquisador, ele consegue tanto realizar grandes mudanças históricas escrevendo obras geniais como o Agents of Byzantium como mexer em detalhes bem pequenos como o presente neste conto. Vou entregar só um detalhe sobre esta história porque do contrário será impossível eu comentar a respeito dela. Sim, a ...more
Judy & Marianne from Long and Short Reviews
Sometimes the lives of ordinary people are the most interesting ones of all.

At first glance, this world was very similar to our own. The differences between them were important, though, and they did give important hints about the science fiction elements of the plot. I was fascinated by this alternate version of history and how a small tweak to the flow of time could have such big impacts on the lives of certain people.

It would have been nice to have a bit more information about why history play
Jan 05, 2021 rated it liked it
This short story is just an interview with an elderly Holocaust survivor called Anne by a bunch of schoolkids. This is a fairly common sort of thing in real life - elderly Holocaust survivors describing their lives to a future audience. You can find lots of documentaries that do that (check out Shoah). As such there's not really a lot you can't find elsewhere. In fact all of it you can find in great detail elsewhere because...

The old lady is Anne Frank.

Yeah, Harry Turtledove's primarily an alter
Claudia Piña
Nov 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Que bella historia. Al principio quedé encantada con la forma pragmática y resignada de la protagonista. Un retrato cotidiano y familiar que permite entender, aunque sea por afuerita, que envejecer es más que las cosas que puedes o no puedes hacer, sino toda una realidad que incluye el acumulado de tus experiencias.

Cuando entendí el plot twist, parte de mi se alegró pero también dolió mucho. Esta historia no existiría si no fuera por la injusticia misma que hace que seamos capaces de entenderla.
Melissa Jones
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was my first taste of anything by Turtledove, and I'm thoroughly impressed. It wasn't until I had finished reading this short story that I realized what the "alternative history" was about. I won't spoil it for you, but perhaps you'll pick up on it quicker than I did.
Anne Berkowitz is a resident at The Hebrew Home for the Aging. Just as the title says, she speaks to a class of eighth grade students about her experiences during and after the Holocaust.
This was a wonderful short story that c
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Enjoyable, if uninspired, short story. (view spoiler) ...more
Mark Moxley-Knapp
A nice exercise in alternative history. A novella, not super long, it shows Anne Frank if she had survived. Well-written, a fun read, not exactly surprising in any way.
Mary Catelli
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
A quiet little alternative history.

Avoid reviews -- they tend to have spoilers.
Jack Holt
Apr 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Turtledove's story of the Holocaust

H.T. excels at alternate history. This tale of the holocaust recounts a better life for one 'survivor-that-should-have-been.' The tail is bittersweet because you cannot read it without thinking "what might've been". To fully enjoy the story, you need to know some of the events and people that are referred to in it. This may be one of the best excuses to use Wikipedia or a Google search you will ever have. H.T. does not spoonfeed you an easy idea or 100% happy e
Maggie Gordon
A brief look at a world where there was a small difference in how the Holocaust turned out. It was not earth shattering for everyone in the world, but Turtledove gives readers a touching and introspective piece to ponder.
Jan 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Nice alternate history tale depicting Anne Frank as a survivor of the war.
Cynthia Wood
Feb 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Sweet, and quiet, and hits its mark so neatly and softly you don't even notice what it's really about until after you finish. ...more
Jan 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
A beautifully written alternate history. If only she had lived long enough to have had a chance at this life - or any other alternative.
It didn't really feel like a remarkable story while I was reading it, and then I realized that I had goosebumps so hard the hair on the back of my neck was standing up. So there's that. ...more
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sff
I didn't get it until I read the comments. (view spoiler) ...more
3.5 stars
Nicola Montague
rated it it was amazing
Jan 15, 2014
rated it liked it
Mar 30, 2020
Robert Marshall
rated it it was amazing
Jan 19, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Mar 30, 2020
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Dr Harry Norman Turtledove is an American novelist, who has produced a sizeable number of works in several genres including alternate history, historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction.

Harry Turtledove attended UCLA, where he received a Ph.D. in Byzantine history in 1977.

Turtledove has been dubbed "The Master of Alternate History". Within this genre he is known both for creating original sce

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