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The award-winning, National Curriculum selected story of a little girl caught up in the Second World War

'The story I'm going to tell is true. It happened to me. It is a tale of Gunpowdertown

Life for Cristal has been upside down for a long time. She can’t even remember a time before the war began. Before potatoes for every meal and bombs raining down from the sky. Before being forced to shelter in the dark, damp cellars. Then one day, Cristal’s home is turned into a pile of rubble and dust five metres high.

But a chance offer saves her family. They move to the safety of a wealthy suburb, camping out amongst the chandeliers and family portraits of someone else’s house. That is until the dreaded Russians roll into Vienna and move in too…

Includes exclusive material: In the Backstory you can test your knowledge of the book, and learn more about the Second World War

Vintage Children’s Classics is a twenty-first century classics list aimed at 8-12 year olds and the adults in their lives. Discover timeless favourites from The Jungle Book and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to modern classics such as The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.

Reviews

A triumph, equally accessible to the ten year old and the adult reader

Leon Garfield

The way a child sees the second world war through the small details of her life is movingly captured in a beautiful first-person story first published in the 70s

Guardian

An engaging tale with ordinary people made extraordinary by circumstances

School Librarian

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780099582854

    December 2, 2013

    Vintage Children's Classics

    288 pages

    RRP $16.99

    Online retailers

    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.co.nz

  • Paperback

    9781842709207

    July 15, 2009

    Andersen

    192 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.co.nz

  • EBook

    9781473512016

    March 6, 2014

    Vintage Digital

    288 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle NZ
    • iBooks NZ
    • Google Play EBook NZ
    • Kobo Ebook
    • Booktopia NZ

Also by Christine Nostlinger