Reading Level: 5.4 Interest Level: 4-7 Accelerated Reader: reading level: 5.4 / points: 11.0 / quiz: 176729 / Reading Counts!: reading level:5.3 / points:18.0 / quiz:Q66457 Lexile 810L
With the rise of the Berlin Wall, twelve-year-old Gerta finds her family
suddenly divided. She, her mother, and her brother Fritz live on the
eastern side, controlled by the Soviets. Her father and middle brother,
who had gone west in search of work, cannot return home. Gerta knows it
is dangerous to watch the wall, to think forbidden thoughts of freedom,
yet she can't help herself. She sees the East German soldiers with their
guns trained on their own citizens; she, her family, her neighbors and
friends are prisoners in their own city.
But one day, while on her way to school, Gerta spots her father on a viewing platform on the western side, pantomiming a peculiar dance. Then, when she receives a mysterious drawing, Gerta puts two and two together and concludes that her father wants Gerta and Fritz to tunnel beneath the wall, out of East Berlin. However, if they are caught, the consequences will be deadly. No one can be trusted. Will Gerta and her family find their way to freedom?