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by Renia Spiegel
After being locked in a safe for decades, this recently discovered diary of a young polish woman provides a unique perspective on World War II and the Holocaust. Living in territory occupied by Russia until 1942, Renia is somewhat sheltered as Hitler invades and Warsaw crumbles to ghetto. Her journal provides a surreal contrast of normal life events, like school, friends, her changing body and boys, but also scattered accounts of war and continuous prayers for her mother trapped in Warsaw. Once the war reaches Renia, it strikes fast and few survive.