Summer of My German Soldier

by Bette Greene

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What are some of Patty's characteristics in Summer of my German Soldier?

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In Summer of My German Soldier, the protagonist is a young girl by the name of Patty, who can best be described, above all else, as lonely. She is from a wealthy Jewish family, but she is viewed by them--and others-- in many ways to be an outcast and a failure, which only adds to her feelings of lonliness and frustration. Throughout the novel she deals with many of the typical feelings of teenage girls, but due to her actions of harboring a German POW, her problems are on a much larger and life altering scale than most.  She feels horribly isolated and bored and is only able to escape by retreating into a world of her own made up of make-believe, exaggeration, and lies.  In the end she is left with pretty much the same characteristics and lots of trouble, but the novel comes to an end before the reader is able to observe any real changes in Patty's character.  Brenda

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Patty is lonely, isolated because of her Jewish heritage and the position of her family in the town.  She struggles to understand and respond maturely to challenges that confront her because of the war, trying to make sense of issues such as the nature of hate and mass hysteria as evidenced in the vandalizing of Mr. Lee's store and Anton's escape.  She is intelligent, as she shows the reporter she guides to the prisoner-of-war camp, and loyal, as she proves by taking the blame for aiding Anton, and sparing her mother.  She can also be foolish, as she shows in not keeping quiet about the ring Anton gave her.

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