I read this book for Battle of the Books in 5th grade and I feel it is a very appropriate for that age range. It is a work that is a bit slower so it takes some time to digest for younger kids. It takes place in WW2 and therefore has moments of grief as Lily deals with the death of her mother and the war overseas.
This book is a gem and a great read, the only reason I say 8 and up is because the pace is rather slow for a children's book so it is wise to take the attention span of a child into consideration. I feel this book is an extremely good introduction to the topic of WW2 and should be treated accordingly.
Great descriptive writing but not for kids. Young readers likely to walk away from book thinking that lieing and sneaky behavior are acceptable. Uses a four letter word in the first chapter. If writing for children, the author must have forgotten who the audience is. As a parent, I do not recommend this book.
I read this book because my daughter was required to read it for school. Despite the editors claim that Lily's lying would be understood by the reader - that never really happened. The fact that the author was determined to "show us" how her lying was OK - acceptable even - really bothered me. I don't know why this book won a Caldecott Award accept for it's war time setting. The writer is talented but I question the moral message here.