What are some of the everyday hardships that the Johansens and the Rosens have to face because of the war in Number the Stars?

In Number the Stars, some of the everyday hardships that the Johansens and the Rosens face because of the war include lack of fresh food such as dairy products or meat, which are rationed. It is difficult to get leather goods. Annemarie’s sister needs to wear shoes made from fish skin. The adults cannot get cigarettes or coffee, and it is also colder because there is not enough electricity to heat their apartments or turn on the electric lights.

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Fresh food was rationed because most of it was sent to the German soldiers. This means that the two families do not have dairy products such as cream or butter as they did before the war. When Mama takes the girls to Uncle Henrik’s farm, Annemarie is thrilled to see...

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Fresh food was rationed because most of it was sent to the German soldiers. This means that the two families do not have dairy products such as cream or butter as they did before the war. When Mama takes the girls to Uncle Henrik’s farm, Annemarie is thrilled to see the pitcher of cream on the table at breakfast. It was not only fresh cream that they no longer had access to but meat, eggs, and many other products were rationed.

For instance, it is difficult for the two families to get leather goods. Annemarie’s younger sister needs new shoes, and she has to settle for a pair of shoes made from fish skin. Kirsti is extremely unhappy with this and has an outburst, saying,

I won't ever, ever wear them! Not if you chain me in a prison and beat me with sticks!

Ellen is confused by Kirsti’s response, because she wishes that her mother would get her new shoes. She notes that “it's so hard to find” new shoes in the stores. Mama notes that "we were lucky to find shoes at all."

The adults cannot get cigarettes or coffee easily. Annemarie thinks that “cigarettes were the thing that Papa missed, the way Mama missed coffee.”

It is also colder in the apartments during the war, and there is not enough electricity for families to turn on the electric lights as they did before the war. The author writes that "there was no fuel now for the homes and apartments in Copenhagen, and the winter nights were terribly cold."

The Johansens installed a stove to heat their apartment "when they could find coal to burn." During the war, the two families use candles for light when it gets dark, even though candlelight was much dimmer than the electric lights they were accustomed to before the war.

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