Number the Stars is a novel written by Lois Lowry about a young girl named Annemarie Johansen and her experiences during World War II. Annemarie lives with her family in Copenhagen, Denmark. During this time, Nazi officers are relocating Jewish citizens.
One of Annemarie's best friends, Ellen Rosen, is a young Jewish girl whose family is trying to avoid being relocated by German soldiers. Ellen's parents must leave town to visit relatives, and Ellen moves in with the Johansen family. After German soldiers visit the Johansen household, Mrs. Johansen, Annemarie, and Ellen make plans to go stay with Annemarie's uncle Henrik. Uncle Henrik is the brother of Mrs. Johansen and is a fisherman.
Annemarie's father calls Henrik on the phone to say that he is sending his wife and one carton of cigarettes. This is code to signal that Ellen will be joining Annemarie and his wife.
In order to get to Henrik's house, the ladies must take a train ride. They take the train to Gilleleje and then must walk along a path through the woods rather than walking along the road. After walking through the woods, they arrive at Henrik's house in a clearing just beyond the woods.