The Wall by Admin Online

The Wall
Title : The Wall
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780374347017
Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 56

A NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER I was born at the beginning of it all, on the Red side--the Communist side--of the Iron Curtain. Through annotated illustrations, journals, maps, and dreamscapes, Peter Sís shows what life was like for a child who loved to draw, proudly wore the red scarf of a Young Pioneer, stood guard at the giant statue of Stalin, and believed whatever heA NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLERI was born at the beginning of it all, on the Red side--the Communist side--of the Iron Curtain. Through annotated illustrations, journals, maps, and dreamscapes, Peter Sí­s shows what life was like for a child who loved to draw, proudly wore the red scarf of a Young Pioneer, stood guard at the giant statue of Stalin, and believed whatever he was told to believe. But adolescence brought questions. Cracks began to appear in the Iron Curtain, and news from the West slowly filtered into the country. Sí­s learned about beat poetry, rock 'n' roll, blue jeans, and Coca-Cola. He let his hair g


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The Wall Reviews

  • karen

    wow. i truly do underestimate the sophistication of childrens books. and even uninformed adults can learn things! (like i didnt know allen ginsberg had been deported from prague for subversion.)this book really does a good job of explaining to kids what it was like to live with so many restrictions and deprivations, and so much fear and caution. im not a great fan of the artwork, but i think it works really well with the story.

  • Eve

    Iron Curtain: The boundary that symbolically, ideologically, and physically divided Europe into two separate areas after World War II. Cold War: The geopolitical, ideological, and economic struggle that emerged between capitalism and communism from 1945 to 1991.Communism: The ideology of the Soviet Union and other countries; a system of government in which the state controls all social and economic activity. These basic terms lay the foundation for this graphic memoir, in which Sis recounts his [...]

  • Betsy

    Totalitarian regimes make for good children’s books. They just do. What could be more inherently exciting plot-wise than a world in which you never know who to trust? Where children report parents to the police and freedom and creativity are stifled under the boots of oppressors? That makes for good copy. This year alone we’ve the Cultural Revolution book, “The Revolution Is Not a Dinner Party” by Ying Chang Compestine and the much discussed Peter Sis title, “The Wall: Growing Up Behin [...]

  • Manybooks

    Please note that while I am most definitely left of centre economically and consider myself a social democrat, I have actually politically NEVER been in any manner enamoured of Communism (especially Stalinism) and its state-run generally dictatorial collectivism and have therefore and for that very reason also always despised the dictatorships that proliferated behind the so-called Iron Curtain (in countries like the former East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Romania, Hungary, Poland et al). And becau [...]

  • Rfrancik

    Caldecott honor book and winner of the Robert Sibert Medal this incredibly detailed book functions on a number of levels. It is simultaneously; a written history of Czechoslovakia twice invaded by the Soviets, an autobiography of the author’s life behind the Iron Curtain and a graphic novel detailing historical and personal events. This book could be used by grades 4th through High School. The detailed pictures represent historical and biographical events clearly from a personal perspective. T [...]

  • Greg

    This is kind of like a Kundera novel for kids, but told with lots of pictures and not so many words. Better than some of the Kundera books I have read, like say Immortality, but not others. Is it right to even be comparing Kundera to a children's book? Not growing up in a totalitarian regime, I don't really know what it is like, and I have a feeling that compared to even a sliver of what life was like under Soviet rule the freedoms of the West are glorious, but there is quite a bit of almost col [...]

  • Patrick Peterson

    This book is simply fantastic. For anyone who wants to know what life was really like growing up behind the iron curtain in general, or more specifically in Czechoslovakia.For anyone who wants their kids to know what communism really means.For anyone who enjoys wonderfully perceptive drawings, however crude or complex, with minimal, but telling text.For anyone who grew up in the 50s-70s who knew something about what was happening in eastern Europe then, but did/does not quite know for sure. For [...]

  • Marta

    It goes without saying The Wall is a valuable history lesson, but also a blueprint for an emotional story of a young man whose imagination and creativity allowed him to endure the times of political hardship. The colours in the book are one of the main sources of emotional messages. The red Soviet star symbolises an utter subordination of the people controlled by the political apparatus and the red colour seems to be present in all the pictures of the boy’s childhood, which means the domestic [...]

  • Karrie

    As I read The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Peter Sis, I was thinking back to my visit to Prague a few years ago and tried to imagine what it must have been like to grow up there when Peter Sis did. The Prague I saw was nothing like the government controlled, society censored, and creativity crusher that he describes in this intricate story. When I was in Prague, it was as if the citizens were making up for all the lost time under Communist rule. Women in provocative clothes propos [...]

  • Malbadeen

    I'm not a huge fan of Peter Sis, I do that ubiquitous "I appreciate his work but don't really enjoy it personally thing" that I hope covers me should not loving him be the un-cool thing I kind of think it is. One of the things I don't like about his work is it is usually soooooo wordy. To me, his picture books feel like a pregnant woman in their 11th month. Just too much of a good thing. BUT this book. This book was just the opposite. I was wishing it were longer, not in words necessarily but in [...]

  • Christine

    This is the first 1-star I gave to a Caldecott Honor books. I'm terribly disappointed this book made the list and the fact that it did made me rather angry, and here's why. This book is no better than the propaganda the communist states put up. How is this book ever of any benefit to children reading Caldecotts? Let us go through it point by point. 1) The illustrations: mediocre at best, nothing special, nothing that would spur a child's imagination.2) The text: confusing, there are smaller text [...]

  • Emily Hynes

    Peter Sis's The Wall is a moving story of his experience growing up in Czechoslovakia during the Cold War. It is a multi-layered story, where with each glance you notice something new that adds new depth to your reading. The picture book is both informative and narrative. Each page includes simplistic text that could be followed by young readers--mapping the author's life as a child and artist influenced by communist "brainwashing." Also included are symbolic illustrations that act as a historic [...]

  • Andrea

    A brilliantly illustrated and narrated non-fiction graphic novel, The Wall:Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Peter Sis depicts Sis's life growing up in Prague, Czechoslovakia, during the Cold War. You have to see this book and flip through its pages to fully appreciate Sis's sophisticated manner in telling his story--from his use of color (or lack thereof) in the story line to the juxtaposition of text. Each page of this powerful memoir has you wanting more--in order to better understand wha [...]

  • Agnes U

    An amazing book with even more amazing message. Despite my high demands for more alluring art style, I was completely blown away by the techniques used to portray historical facts and the narrator's life struggle. I was skeptical at first, since I concluded that war is not a topic a child could ever read and be exposed to; however, the author does a remarkable job at portraying the struggles of both the war that the Czech Republic faced and a personal artistic struggle of the author. I've never [...]

  • Beverly

    An interesting autobiography illustrated in several different ways. Some of the black and white drawings have touches of red and are set in panels. Other illustrations are full-page or double-page spreads, some full color, others black and white or red. The story details the hardships and despair of the people behind the wall, and Sis's dreams of becoming a free person. The illustrations do a good job of depicting the dichotomy between the two realities.

  • Jenny

    I can't say I loved this book, yet I think it has value. It explains how Sis felt growing up in Czechoslovakia during the Cold War. It's a unique insight into his experiences living in a communist country with little freedom. I recognize that it has a fairly didactic approach, but as this is autobiographical and the author experienced these things, I feel he has the right to express his views about the evils of the communist state he lived under. He saw and experienced some terrible things. (I'm [...]

  • Melissa Joulwan

    I've read many memoirs about life behind the Iron Curtain, and this thin, illustrated book packs more emotional wallop than 400 pages of text can. Sis's art—black, white, and red illustrations—appear quite whimsical at first glance, but look closer, and you'll see the burdens of living under a dictatorial regime. So many red stars and flags! But this story of Prague from post-WWII until 1998, is not heavy—it's sobering, sometimes shocking, informative, but ultimately, hopeful and defiant. [...]

  • Corinne

    I first fell in love with Peter Sís decades ago, when I read his picture book Starry Messenger, about Galileo Galilei. I loved the style and feel of his illustrations. When I saw that he'd written a picture book memoir about his childhood, I was intrigued. The Wall is about growing up in Prague, a Prague under the thumb of Russia and Communism. Early on, our author is aware of the stark reality that he can think and dream and draw one thing at home behind closed doors, but out in the world, he [...]

  • Susan

    Peter Sis' THe Wall captivated me and left me wanting to learn more about life for all kinds of people living behind the iron curtain during the cold war. I connected with the text as a parent of young children, reflecting on the freedoms I at times take for granted. Sis sketches pictures showing the bars placed on his thinking. Growing up as a schoolboy he was forced to become part of the soviet governed ways. He was told how to draw, what to draw, what to think. In his communist world the only [...]

  • Agnes

    The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron CurtainBy Peter SisFarr, Straus and Giroux, 2007 (56 pages)Non-Fiction Book/Award WinnerCaldecott Honor BookAges 11 and upIn this autobiographical story, a young artist is coming of age in Cold War time Czechoslovakia, when Soviet political repression controls all aspects of human life. In this nonfiction work the author depicts his life story in a series of mostly black and white sketch-like drawings. The bright red elements embedded within the compositions [...]

  • Myra

    Šią ir kitas mano apžvalgas galima rasti štai čia: knygoholike/2016/0Peterio Siso knyga vaikams "The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain"/"Siena: vaikystė už geležinės uždangos" - "New York Times" bestseleris ir kelių premijų laimėtoja. Papuolė man ši knyga kaip komiksas. Ir nors vienur kitur ši knyga taip ir pristatoma, komiksu aš ją tik apsirikus pavadinčiau. Iš esmės tai knyga vaikams: daug piešinių ir šiek tiek informatyvaus teksto.P. Sisas - gimęs ir augęs Če [...]

  • Betti Napiwocki

    The Wall by Peter Sis is a sophisticated picture book which represents the story of author Peter Sis life as her grew up in Czechoslovakia during the Cold War. Although this book is categorized as a picture book, it is a blend of picture book and graphic novel. The illustrations are as vivid and telling as the words on the page. Winner of the Caldecott award for illustrations, the reader becomes aware of the absence of color – except for spots of communist red – on most pages, each page refl [...]

  • Berkley Morris

    Being a history enthusiast, this book immediately caught my attention. I remember reading many books in high school about the Cold War. However, I have not read a book like this one. Peter Sis does a stellar job telling the "other" side of the story--his side, from the inside looking out. I especially enjoyed that this story was written from a child's perspective growing up on the communistic side of the Wall.Although the Soviet Union dictated how he dressed, what he listened to, what he watched [...]

  • Jenn Henderson

    Theme(s): The Iron Curtain, art as resistance/escapeAward(s): American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults; American Library Association Notable Children's Books; Caldecott Honor Book; IRA Notable Books for a Global Society; Boston Globe - Horn Book Award; New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Books of the Year; Orbis Pictus; Top 10 Editors’ Picks: Children; Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year; CCBC Choice (Univ. of WI); Children's Books: 100 Titles for Reading and [...]

  • Erin

    Peter Sis's Caldecott and Sibert Award winning book is an autobiographical text that chronicles the author's childhood growing up behind the "Iron Curtain." Peter Sis was born in Brno, Czechoslovakia, and grew up in Prague during the Cold War era. After the end of World War II, Russians occupied this territory-beginning an era of extreme isolation and fear. An artist from as early as he can remember, Peter uses drawing as a means of expressing his hopes and dreams he often feels he must silence [...]

  • Christy

    Having grown up in the west during the Cold War, I have vivid memories of the tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union. The threat of nuclear war was a commonplace part of our everyday lives. In The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain, Peter Sis depicts his own childhood in Russian occupied Czechoslovakia.At home, Peter can draw anything he wants. At school, however, he can only draw what he is told. He explains how easy it was for children to be brainwashed and not question [...]

  • Leigh

    Audience: Suggested for 3rd grade and up; historical non-fiction; combination graphic novel and picture book with journalingAppeal: I made an instant connection with this book as I have visited the Czech Republic, and this book shed light on the behaviors that my family and I had noticed while we stayed there. The book is a first-person account in which the author takes us through his early childhood into adulthood behind the Iron Curtain. The book is brutally honest about what it was like to be [...]

  • Jaclin McGuire

    I agree with a lot of the posts that say there's a lot going on in this book, which is why I think (along with many others) that this book is for an older reader who can digest a decent amount of text, as it's a heavy subject matter, but also appreciate the format that includes drawings, wrap-around text, etc.The use of the (cute) baby at the beginning and the use of the color red struck me as genius, as the baby implies that such a strong historical movement affected everyone, and the color red [...]

  • 538pm_jlytle

    The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron CurtainBy Peter Sis2008 Caldecott Honor MedalPeter Sis, relates the story of his life through text and illustration of life under communist controlled Czechoslovakia. Read and become immersed in the black, white, and red drawings of Sis’s youth and education under the communist rule, or as Sis puts it “This was the time of brainwashing.” This book is formatted and written in a way that is better suited for 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders.The book discusses th [...]

  • Amie

    In Peter Sis's memoir, The Wall, we get to see what it was like to grow up on the communist side of the Iron Curtain. Peter grew up in Czechoslovakia during the Cold War. From very early on, he loved to draw and drew whatever he wanted. Once school started though he was made to draw only certain things. At first he didn't question what he was being taught and told, but as he grew and found out a little more about the West, Peter realized all he was missing out on - The Beatles, Rock and Roll, FR [...]