What is the climax of Number the Stars?

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poetrymfa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Lois Lowry's work of historical fiction, Number the Stars, follows the story of Annemarie Johansen, who puts her life at stake to rescue her Jewish best friend, Ellen Rosen, from being sent to a concentration camp. Ellen hides from Nazi forces searching for Danish Jews by hiding her identity and pretending to be Lise, the deceased older sister of Annemarie.

The climax of the novel occurs when Annemarie is tasked with delivering a very important packet for the Resistance to her Uncle Henrik. As Annemarie walks on the path to the harbor, she is confronted by four Nazi soldiers with snarling dogs. Annemarie pretends she is taking food to Henrik, but the soldiers do not believe her, tearing apart her basket of food and opening the Resistance's envelope to reveal a simple handkerchief. Annemarie is eventually released and successfully delivers the handkerchief (which turns out to contain a scent that will distract search dogs from discovering Jews hidden in the boat in the harbor) to her uncle.