Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Review: THE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL by Anne Frank


Rating: 5/5 stars

I originally read this book in seventh grade, but I never actually finished it. I read more than half but I can’t remember exactly where I stopped or why. Probably just busy with school and didn’t get around to it.

Well, this year I decided to reread the book, and I found myself much more engaged than I expected to be! Anne Frank is a very interesting girl. I love her voice and her personality, and I found myself becoming very attached to her. I kept wishing as I was reading that I could have been her friend and got to know her. 

Anne was very wise and mature for a teenager, and I was continually surprised—in a good way—by some of the things she would say and observations she would make. She’s very smart and self-aware. She was also very forward-thinking for her time: “I believe that in the course of the next century, the notion that it’s a woman’s duty to have children will change and make way for the respect and admiration of all women, who bear their burdens without complaint.”

It is so sad that she died so young because I think she would have grown up to make a difference in the world. Anne wanted so much to be a writer and for her spirit to live on after she died, and that’s exactly what happened with her diary. I think it’s wonderful that her father was able to fulfill her dream and publish her diary. 

“I’ve made up my mind to lead a different life from other girls, and not to become an ordinary housewife later on. What I’m experiencing here is a good beginning to an interesting life.”

Even though this memoir is about a Jewish girl and her family in hiding during World War Two, it is not a sad book. Anne mostly writes about her feelings and about the quarrels and conversations between the eight people living in the annex. She writes about the food they eat and the activities they do to pass the time. And sometimes she writes about the philosophical musings of her mind. Rarely does she mention the war and what’s going on outside the annex, probably due in part to her not always knowing. I can’t imagine how hard it would be to live in such a confined space for two years, everyone getting on everyone’s nerves and no one being able to leave for fresh air.

I am glad Anne Frank kept a journal and that it was posthumously published so the world can learn more about her and about life during that awful time. I am eager to see the Anne Frank Museum in Amsterdam now that I know her story, and I hope I can visit it someday to learn more about her. 

I would definitely recommend reading Anne’s story if you have any interest in what Jews had to go through during Hitler’s tyranny during the 1940s. The Diary of a Young Girl was a very interesting and engaging account of her last two years of life. 

“A quiet conscience gives you strength.” 

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