Sunday, August 10, 2008

One Thousand Tracings. Healing the Wounds of World War II

Written by Lita Judge, One Thousand Tracings is a fascinating picture book inspired by events in the lives of the author's grandparents. The book jacket and the inside of the front and back covers are a montage of photographs, foot tracings, envelopes and letters from Germany listing the needs of post-war families.

The picture book is set up so in a somewhat diary form commencing with December 1946 with the entry "Papa Came Home" and follows monthly until September 1947 when the entries become further spaced apart. Each entry tells about a little girl and her family and how they first help friends overseas in need of shoes. These friends, the Kramers are so touched by the generosity of their American friends that they suggest they help other German families worse off and send tracings of their feet so that suitable shoes can be found. Soon thousands of foot tracings arrive.
Each entry is beautifully illustrated with exquisite water colour drawings which convey the emotions felt in each entry. There are also various photos accompanying some entries which show items sent overseas.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I learned something new about the post-war period and it was interesting to read about the authors connection to the story portrayed in the book.
Highly recommended.

Book Details:
One Thousand Tracings. Healing the Wounds of World War II
Written and Illustrated by Lita Judge
Hyerion Books for Children, 2007

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