Number the Stars

by Lois Lowry
132 pages, Historical Fiction
Reviewed by niennasiblings

A interesting read with fairly good values.


Living in Nazi-occupied Denmark, Anneliese wistfully remembers days before the war, but is more concerned about winning the school race than about the soldiers who stand on every street corner. That is, until one night when she is roused by a pounding on the door and harsh voices demanding to know where their Jewish neighbors have gone...


The characters lie to Nazis in order to save Jews. Anneliese lies to get out of trouble. Selflessness, self-sacrifice, courage, and loyalty are shown throughout the book.

Spiritual Content

Some characters are Jewish, so the book talks a little about Jewish customs.


Anneliese's older sister has been killed by the Nazis in a car "accident" and this is referred to a few times. The book talks about The Dutch Resistance. A main character is killed. Characters pretend to be at a funeral. Nothing is at all descriptive.

Drug and Alcohol Content

A drug is used to numb dogs' sense of smell. A sedative is used to make a baby sleep so he won't cry and reveal the hidden Jews. "Cigarettes" is used as a code word.

Sexual Content

Annaliese remembers her sister dancing with her fiance at their engagement party.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

"Oh my God" is said twice.


Number the Stars is an interesting book with responsible, sympathetic characters and good values. It gives an excellent, child's glimpse into WWII, without being too disturbing.

Fun Score: 4
Values Score: 4
Written for Age: 8-10

Review Rating:

Average rating: 3 stars
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