Books

My Guardian Angel

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  • Sylvie Weil (author)
  • Gillian Rosner (translator)
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About the Book

The streets are eerily empty, and everyone in the Jewish community is terrified of Peter the Hermit. His men, the Crusaders, are moving through the town on their way to the Holy Land. They have been known to batter down doors and burn Jewish houses, all in the name of religion.
This is not Nazi Germany but Troyes, France, in 1096, as seen through the eyes of funny, feisty, twelve-year-old Elvina. She is the granddaughter of the great rabbi Rashi, and she knows how to read and write—which is very rare for a girl of her time. She draws strength from this, as well as from her guardian angel, to whom she regularly speaks.
On a cold Sabbath afternoon while Elvina is alone in the house, three soldiers pound at her door. One of them is wounded. Elvina has only a moment to make a difficult choice that could put her family and the entire community at risk. Can her guardian angel guide her and keep her safe?
My Guardian Angel is a story of compassion and tolerance that speaks clearly to readers of all faiths. Elvina’s voice lingers long in memory, and her courage and humor long in the heart.

Awards

Winner of the Prix Sorcières, France’s most prestigious award for children’s literature.

A Sydney Taylor Honor Book

Sylvie Weil

Sylvie Weil was raised in Paris and earned her degrees in classics and French literature at the Sorbonne. She has taught French literature at Barnard, Bennington, and Hunter colleges, and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is the author of several works of adult fiction and the Elvina trilogy, a series of French novels for young adults. The first book in the trilogy, le Mazal d’Elvina, (My Guardian Angel), won the Prix Sorcieres, a prestigious French prize awarded for the best novel for young readers.

Gillian Rosner

Gillian Rosner has translated many award-winning books for children, including Secrets from 0 to 10 and A Book of Coupons.