In the course of this great novel, Hannah gains first-hand knowledge of the horrors that her family went through during the Holocaust and comes to appreciate the importance of the rituals in which her family participates.
At the beginning of the novel, Hannah complains bitterly to her mother about having to attend the Seder dinner at her grandparents' home. She finds her grandparents' focus on the past to be a source of great irritation, and even when her mother reminds her that her grandparents lost loved ones during the war, none of it feels real or relevant to Hannah.
During the course of the family dinner, Hannah is magically transported back to 1942—the middle of World War II. Hannah, along with members of her family, are taken captive by the Nazis and transported to a concentration camp. Here, Hannah experiences first-hand much of what her grandparents have been talking about. She is required to work at the camp; she suffers the agony of a close friend being sent to the gas...
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