The Cat with the Yellow Star: Coming of Age in Terezin

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Ela Stein was eleven years old in February of 1942 when she was sent to the Terezin concentration camp with other Czech Jews. By the time she was liberated in 1945, she was fifteen. Somehow during those horrendous three-and-a-half years of sickness, terror, separation from loved ones, and loss, Ela managed to grow up. Although conditions were wretched, Ela forged lifelong friendships with other girls from Room 28 of her barracks. Adults working with the children tried their best to keep up the youngest prisoners' spirits. A children's opera called Brundibar was even performed, and Ela was chosen to play the pivotal role of the cat. Yet amidst all of this, the feared transports to death camps and death itself were a part of daily life. Full of sorrow, yet persistent in its belief that humans can triumph over evil; this unusual memoir tells the story of an unimaginable coming of age.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Mwbordel - LibraryThing

The Cat with the Yellow Star tells to story of Ela Stein. Ela was eleven years old when she and her mother and sister were sent to Terezin, a concentration camp.The story begins in 1938 with the onset ... Read full review

THE CAT WITH THE YELLOW STAR: Coming of Age in Terezin

User Review  - Kirkus

In February 1942, 11-year-old Ela was sent with her family to Terezin, the Nazis' "model camp" in what was then Czechoslovakia. Despite horrific conditions, she somehow almost thrived, thanks to ... Read full review


Prague Czechoslovakia 19381942
Terezin Czechoslovakia 19421943
Terezin 19441945
Czechoslovakia and Israel 19451958
New York Vienna and Prague 19581986
Los Angeles California 20032004
So many went so few came back 14 Authors Note
Acknowledgments 25 Source Notes
Interviews Internet Sites
34 36 36 37 37 38 39 39

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About the author (2006)

Susan Goldman Rubin grew up in the Bronx and dreamed of becoming an artist. She illustrated her first three picture books but then turned to writing nonfiction, mainly about art and history, and is the author of more than 55 books for young people. Her titles include Diego Rivera: An Artist For The People, They Call Me A Hero: A Memoir of My Youth, Music Was It! Young Leonard Bernstein, Everyone Paints! The Art and Lives of the Wyeth Family, and Freedom Summer: The 1964 Struggle for Civil Rights in Mississippi. Most recently Susan has created board books based on fine art for very young children. Her titles include Counting with Wayne Thiebaud, Andy Warhol's Colors, and Matisse: Dance For Joy. Susan has been an instructor in the UCLA Extension Writers' Program for 20 years.

Ela Weissberger was liberated from Terezin in May of 1945. In 1949 she emigrated to Israel and later came to the United States, where she married and raised a family. Today, Ela spends much of her time speaking to audiences of all ages about her Holocaust experiences.

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