What similar themes are present in Hana's Suitcase and Making Up Megaboy?

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Although the situations of the teenage girl and teenage boy differ significantly, the primary theme of loss of innocence is present in both works. They are also concerned with the difficulty of understanding the nature of evil in the world, as malevolent acts cannot always be explained. The central character in Hana’s Suitcase is a 13-year-old girl who is killed during the Holocaust, while in Making Up Megaboy, it is a 13-year-old boy who commits a senseless murder. The character in one book is a victim of wartime atrocities, but the character in the other is the perpetrator of an individual action. The comparison suggests contrast more than similarity. In different ways, both raise the question of whether social situations can ever fully justify individual acts.

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