Number the Stars
How we cite our quotes:
Ellen made a face. "No," she said, laughing. "You know I can't beat you—my legs aren't as long. Can't we just walk, like civilized people?" She was a stocky ten-year-old, unlike lanky Annemarie. (1.2)
Number the Stars starts by emphasizing the physical differences between our two main characters—and that makes sense, right? After all, the Nazis twisted differences in identity into punishable crimes, and Number the Stars shows us how subjective these prejudices truly are. Sure, these girls look different, but in all the ways that count, they have a ton in common.
"If he has such a pretty little girl, why doesn't he go back to her like a good father?" Mrs. Johansen murmured, stroking Kirsti's cheek. "Why doesn't he go back to his own country?" (1.60)
The Nazis distinguish people based on their race or religion, but Mrs. Johansen is distinguishing based on nationality. To Annemarie's mom, the difference between Jewish and Christian doesn't matter—they're all Danes.
In her mind, Annemarie had pictured Norway as she remembered it from the map at school, up above Denmark. Norway was pink on the school map. She imagined the pink strip of Norway crushed by a fist. (2.34)
The Nazis are so prejudiced and cruel that it's hard to see them as real people—instead, Annemarie just pictures them as one giant fist. Yikes.