Lesson plan for book: My Real Name is Hanna
Hanna Slivka is on the cusp of fourteen when Hitler’s army crosses the border into Soviet-occupied Ukraine. Soon, the Gestapo closes in, determined to make the shtetele she lives in “free of Jews.” Until the German occupation, Hanna spent her time exploring Kwasova with her younger siblings, admiring the drawings of the handsome Leon Stadnick, and helping her neighbor dye decorative pysanky eggs. But now she, Leon, and their families are forced to flee and hide in the forest outside their shtetele–and then in the dark caves beneath the rolling meadows, rumored to harbor evil spirits.
Underground, they battle sickness and starvation, while the hunt continues above. When Hanna’s father disappears, suddenly it’s up to Hanna to find him–and to find a way to keep the rest of her family, and friends, alive.
Sparse, resonant, and lyrical, weaving in tales of Jewish and Ukrainian folklore, My Real Name Is Hanna celebrates the sustaining bonds of family, the beauty of a helping hand, and the tenacity of the human spirit.
- Video Introduction – still to come
- Educator’s Guide – (c) Mandel Vilar Press – pdf
- Excerpt #1 – pdf
- Excerpt #2 – pdf
- Excerpt #3 – pdf
- Author Interview
- See the documentary that inspired the book: No Place on Earth
- Author’s website – http://www.taramasih.com/index.html
Tara Lynn Masih is a National Jewish Book Award Finalist and winner of the Julia Ward Howe Award for Young Readers for her debut novel My Real Name Is Hanna. Her anthologies include The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction and The Chalk Circle: Intercultural Prizewinning Essays. Where the Dog Star Never Glows is her collection of long and very short stories, and she’s published multiple chapbooks with the Feral Press that are archived in universities such as Yale and NYU. She founded the Intercultural Essay Prize in 2006 and The Best Small Fictions series in 2015.
Masih received a finalist fiction grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, an Inspirational Woman in Literature Award from AITL Media, and several national book awards including an IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award for her role as an editor.