This Newbery Honor winner is one of the most powerful, heart-wrenching, beautiful books I’ve come across in awhile. The setting is WWII England. The main character, Ada, suffers from a clubfoot as well as mental and physical abuse by her mother. She is kept a virtual prisoner in the family’s roach-infested, one-room flat in London. When an opportunity arises for her and her younger brother to escape during an evacuation of the city’s children to the countryside, Ada seizes the chance. As the plot progresses, the reader realizes that the biggest hurdle facing Ada is not her twisted foot, but the damage to her psyche caused by her mother’s cruelty. The War that Saved My Life is a finely crafted story of perseverance, transformation, and ultimately. . . love.
Suggested ages: 10 and up