The Summer that Patty Bergen turned twelve is a summer that will haunt her forever. When her small hometown in Arkansas becomes the site of a camp housing German prisoners during World War II, Patty learns what it means to open her heart. Even though she's
Jewish, she begins to see a prison escapee, Anton, not as a Nazi -- but as a lonely, frightened young man with feelings not unlike her own, who understands and appreciates her in a way her parents never will. And Patty is willing to risk losing family, friends -- even her freedom -- for what has quickly become the most important part of her life.
A classic YA title, and a terrific read!
Read this YA novel because one of my daughters had it as assigned reading years ago and it is one of the few popular WW II fiction books I hadn't read yet.
I can see the that the themes in the book would lead to a lot of discussion in a classroom of pre-teens-- child abuse, being a loner, being different from others in town (Jewish family), conflict with parents.......before you even get to the main act!
Going to avoid any spoilers but really need to say-- Disappointing ending.....it's like the author reached the expected page count and just stopped writing.
"The summer that Patty bergen turns twelve is a summer that will haunt her forever.
When her small hometown in Arkansas becomes the site of a camp housing German prisoners during World War II, Patty Learns what it means to open her heart.
Even though she's Jewish, she begins to see a prison escapee, Anton, not as a Nazi, but as a lonely, frightened young man with feelings not unlike her own.
In Anton, Patty finds someone who softens the pain of her own father's rejection and who appreciates her in a way her mother never will.
While patriotic feelings run high, Patty risks losing family, friends - even her freedom - for this dangerous friendship.
It is a risk she has to take and one she will have to pay a price to keep."
Patty Bergen was twelve the summer that the German prisoners arrived at the POW camp outside Jenkinsville, Arkansas.
Patty- awkward and lonely, always talking too much, unable to please her parents- longed for a friend. Then, when some of the prisoners were brought to her father's store. Patty met Anton. It was a dangerous friendship, between a Jewish girl and a German soldier during World War II, when patriotic feeling was running high.
Summer of My German Soldier was an amazing story of seeing past a uniform or skin color and looking at the true person. It applies to our world today!
Beautifully told story of a 12 year old girl's tenuous friendship with a 20 year old German POW in the American midwest. Patty Bergen is one of the best heroines in young adult literature. Despite all the anti-Nazi propaganda around her, Patty slowly realizes that not all Germans were Nazis and that her new friend, Anton, might not be the bogeyman everyone thinks he is. Highly recommended.
I must say that I didn't not like this book at all. It was slow and boring. I never even saw a point in it. Maybe it was the fact that they made us read it in seventh grade, and I didn't really understand it as well. I'd say if you're going to read this book, at least make sure you're an adult.
Patty Bergen is the protagonist of this story. I could relate to many parts of this story - I am from Arkansas, was the same age as her during WWII with many of the same dreams. And I too once met some German POWs as my father took me to a near-by Army Camp where he was asked to interview some of the prisoners because he spoke German. Like Patty, I was often lonely & felt misunderstood,but for much different reasons...Patty was from a wealthy Jewish family. Her father tried desperately to 'fit in' with their Protestant neighbors which explains why he is so ill tempered & beats Patty, since she often deviates from his standards of how they should act. Her parents neglect her & she is also perceived as a failure. The plot is simple & straight forward, but some understanding of the time period would help the reader. . .Jews were treated differently in America during WWII. Patty is extremely lonely & longs for love. She meets Anton, a German POW, & shelters him after he escapes the prison. The best parts of the book are how she hides him & steals food. I don't want to spoil the story. . . does she and/or the soldier get caught? You'll just have to read it to find out!