The Ice Road
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First published in 1966, this novel focuses on the 900-day Siege of Leningrad by the Germans in WWII. Boris, the hero, struggles amidst bombing raids and extreme deprivation to keep himself and his sick mother alive. A decision to sneak outside the city to find food leads to an encounter that changes his perspective on his plight and his attitude to his enemies. 'Out of the chaos, kind deeds and gentle voices shone like stars. That was how all people should act, how all voices should speak.' This story should still find a resonance with modern-day readers. It is a compulsive read, exciting and realistic in its detail of youngsters caught up in a war-torn region - just like many images we see on our newsreels today!