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Number the Stars

Number the Stars

by Lois Lowry

Fear Theme

Okay, okay, we admit it: Shmoop is afraid of giant spiders. But we'd take a million giant spiders over the kind of fear the characters face in Number the Stars. What they're up against is pretty terrifying. This is one of the worst periods in history, after all. But it's also important to think about how they handle their fear. And if you check out what we have to say about "Courage," you'll see that they pretty much rock it.

Questions About Fear

  1. What's the scariest moment in the book? Why is that moment scarier than the rest? Are there any moments in the book where the characters aren't frightened?
  2. In Number the Stars, is it more dangerous to be afraid or to be brave? 
  3. Do the Nazis have anything to be afraid of?
  4. How do Lois Lowry's writing style and tone contribute to the fear the reader feels?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The fear that Ellen feels and the fear that Annemarie feels are totally different.

Number the Stars proves that courage always conquers fear.

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