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  Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Frances Goodrich

Review by: Alliyah S.
West Virginia, Grade 8

“Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl” is a story written in the form of a play based off diary entries from Anne Frank. It is about a young girl, her family and acquaintances’ troubles to stay hidden in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam in the Netherlands. They hide in Otto Frank’s (Anne’s father) business building’s attic along with another family. Both families are joined later by a dentist who was supposed to stay temporarily at first. There are many restrictions with hiding out and they show to test the families’ patience. As the story goes on we see Anne Frank maturing into a young woman and growing stronger relationships with the people surrounding her such as her sister, mother and Peter (Otto Frank’s friend Mr. Van Pels’ son). Sadly, this story has quite an unfortunate end and the families, along with the dentist, are arrested. The occupants of the Secret Annex are survived by only Otto Frank.
In the beginning of the story a family of four is making their way to the Annex wearing several layers of clothing to dissipate any suspicions from the Gestapo. They later meet the Van Daans at their destination. Anne is at first quick in her movements, out-spoken and attached to her father at the hip. Miep Gies and Mr.Kraler help the Franks and Van Daans while in hiding by providing newscasts, food rations, and signs of hope. Throughout the story, conflicts arise making the occupants stray from each other. For example: Anne spilling milk on Mrs. Van Daans most prized possession or getting into heated discussions with the adults. Yet another conflict arises when dentist Albert Dussel comes to stay with the two families and has troubles with Anne and Peter. But, while some relationships drift others grow, such as Anne and Peter’s attraction towards each other and Anne’s relationship with her mother and sister. Towards the end of the story we witness Anne’s metamorphosis from an adolescent girl into a young lady with her own opinions and character. Unfortunately at the end, the Gestapo is tipped off and the occupants are arrested to be sent to concentration/death camps. Mr. Frank survives long enough for his camp to be liberated and comes to be the only surviving member of the Secret Annex. Later on, he finds Anne’s diary she kept throughout her whole stay at the Annex and has it published in a way to keep his families’, and friends’ memories alive.

I think that this story is a perfect piece of prose for young generations of girls and boys to see the world through another’s eyes in times of war. In some ways I am sure they can relate to her and her views. This story tells about a young girl’s journey through adolescence, maturity and inevitable conflict.

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