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144 Pages • 6.5'' x 8''

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Ages: 9 and up

Reading Levels

Grade: 6-up

Guided Reading Level: Y

A mysterious diary links modern-day Laura to Sara, a young Jewish girl fighting to stay alive during WWII... Laura has just three weeks to go before her Jewish coming of age ceremony, called a Bat Mitzvah, when she is assigned a special project. She is to read the diary of Sara Gittler, a young girl her own age who was imprisoned by the Nazis in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Holocaust. Sara never had the chance to celebrate her coming of age, so Laura is to learn about Sara's life and then share her Bat Mitzvah with her "twin" by speaking of her at the ceremony. Reluctant to undertake the project at first, Laura quickly becomes caught up by Sara's struggle to survive. Sara's diary unfolds with the details of her daily life in the Ghetto, a world full of fear, confusion, tragedy and above all, courage. From Sara's brave story in the past, Laura learns how to find the courage to confront the possibility of a friend's current involvement in the desecration of a Jewish cemetery. Includes photographs, biographies of young heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, and true accounts of Twinning Ceremonies. Kathy Kacer on writing the book: "I have struggled for years with how to make the Holocaust a meaningful event in history for young readers. Given the fact that it happened so many years ago, it is difficult for young people today to make sense of anyone from that time period. The Diary of Laura's Twin allows readers to connect with a contemporary girl, and through her experience of finding and reading the diary of a girl in the Warsaw Ghetto, to then make the bridge to the events of the Holocaust. That is what is unique about this story. It is the co-existence of two important lives, one from today and one from the past who come together in the pages of this book." - from Jewish Books for Children blog interview July 2009

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2009 Canadian Jewish Book Award for Children's Literature 2009

Olive Branch Book Award 2008

National Jewish Book Award for Children's and YA Literature (USA)


To hear Just One More Book's podcast about The Diary of Laura's Twin go to

"Sara's journal is so well-written that you forget it is historical fiction as you read. Kacer has effectively contrasted the lives of two Jewish girls, Sara in the Warsaw Ghetto and Laura in present day Montreal...Whether you read this novel for your own personal enjoyment or use it as a supplementary resource when teaching grade 6 social studies, this book is well worth reading. Highly recommended." -CM Magazine, May 31, 2012

"Kacer does provide an interesting, highly readable story of life in the Warsaw ghetto complete with historical photographs." -School Library Journal, December 1, 2008

"The author beautifully melds historical events with the contemporary issues Laura is facing...This story of history, faith, and hope belongs in every public and Judaic library and would be a welcomed addition to any Holocaust curriculum. Highly recommended." -Jewish Book World, July 1, 2009

"The diary entries are vividly written and readers will be drawn into the account just as Laura is." -Resource Links, June 1, 2008

"Kacer gives young readers a gentle avenue into a traumatic, difficult past they need to know about." -Toronto Star, May 10, 2008


Reading Levels

Grade: 6-up

Guided Reading Level: Y

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