When your a teenager, family dinners are forced upon us, whether we like it or not.
In Jane Yolen’s 2000 novel, The Devil’s Arithmetic, Hannah Stern is a modern teenager who has grown up with her family’s stories of the Holocaust. After hearing them so many times, Hannah has become bored listening to them. Opening the door to Elijah during her family’s annual Passover Seder, Hannah finds herself in 1940’s Europe. World War II has started and the lives of Europe’s Jews are about to change for the worst.
In 1999, a TV movie based on the book aired with Kirsten Dunst in the lead role.
What I like about the book and the movie is that Hannah is just an ordinary teenage girl. She starts off as spoiled and unappreciative and only learns to appreciate her heritage when she relives the horrors of the Holocaust.
I highly recommend both.