Vicki's Reviews > The Old Country

The Old Country by Mordicai Gerstein
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's review
Apr 08, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: ages-9-12, sci-fi

This is fast, magical and good -- so many great images and ideas.

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Vicki This is a children's book, and it can probably skew pretty young -- seven or eight. But I think pretty much anybody would enjoy this book -- it has such a beautiful, mysterious energy, and stands for such incredible things. Gisella is a Crag, a fictional ethnic group living in fictional country, all of which mirrors the siutation of Jews in Europe in the first half of the century. Gisella's family sends her off to kill a fox who keeps stealing their chickens, and Gisella finds herself thrust into the world of magic, while war erupts all around her and the Crags.

It's such a gorgeous story -- metaphor, allegory, fable all wrapped up in one. The book keeps you turning pages, and is just crazy inventive. I teared up a little at the end, and even though I've been thinking about the book for a while, I'm hard pressed to come up with any other books quite like it. Loved it (obviously!).

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