Merry Wanderer of the Night + traveling

Book Review: The Diary of Anne Frank & The Authorized Graphic Biography

The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank is a book I never wanted to admit I'd never read. I felt like it was something everyone read when they were much younger than me, thirteen or fourteen I figured. It's been on my TBR for a long time even though I've never owned a copy. Even though I'd never read the book, Anne Frank Huis was one of my must sees while in Amsterdam. Just because I didn't read the book didn't mean I didn't know the story. Unlike my experience with Dachau and The Book Thief, I was immediately overcome with emotion upon entering Anne Frank Huis. It's a totally different experience, and for me, a much more powerful one.

Anne Frank Huis does not have any furniture, but the walls are done like they were when the Franks hid there. In the center of the rooms are glass cases with artifacts from their time. What really got to me though, were the pictures of Anne Frank at the very beginning of the museum. She looks so happy.

Throughout the house there are quotes from her diary printed on the walls. It was as if she was telling her story to you, which I guess she was. The experience was also powerful for me because I had so many things in common with her. A love of reading and writing, nature, bicycles, and as a teenager I fought with my mother constantly and was extremely close with my father. When reading her diary I found it difficult to read the parts about her mother because I knew she would never get to experience the close relationship with her mother that I've had with mine.

I can't really review her diary, that seems unfair. It is slow in spots but overall a worthwhile read.

"The best remedy for those who are frightened, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere they can be alone, alone with the sky, nature and God. For then and only then can you feel that everything is as it should be and that God wants people to be happy amid nature's beauty and simplicity.

As long as this exists, and that should be for ever, I know that there will be solace for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances. I firmly believe that nature can bring comfort to all who suffer."

I purchased my copy of the diary at Anne Frank Huis and also purchased The Anne Frank House Authorized Graphic Biography

as a companion. It is an absolutely wonderful companion because it tells the before and after of the story and gives insight into what other characters' experiences were like.

The artwork is more traditional than I thought it would be, but there are some seriously disturbing images of Anne and her sister after they were found and sent to a concentration camp. I think I got a little more emotional looking at those images than I did reading her diary. The experiences are extremely different. While reading the diary I thought about how normal Anne's thoughts were for a girl her age: boy, friends, ambitions. That was what made it difficult, she represents the every girl, which makes you realize something like this could have happened to you. Reading the graphic biography gave me a lot more insight and history into her family, the experience of being in hiding, and what happened to the family after.

If you've never read The Diary of a Young Girl, I would highly recommend it and I would recommend reading the graphic biography after. It seemed to be a more fulfilling experience. If you've read the diary, you might want to try the graphic biography-- it might answer some of your unanswered questions.

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Book Review: The Diary of Anne Frank & The Authorized Graphic Biography + traveling