War might seem like a far-off, hazy reality for us, but that sure wasn't the case for Annemarie and her family. In Number the Stars, war affects every part of daily life for the Danes. On the survival level, their food supply is limited and they have to be careful about how much heat they use. On the freedom level, they can't go where they want when they want (and we're not talking about a trip to the mall here) without fear of getting in trouble. And, of course, in the end, even ten-year-old Annemarie gets directly involved in the war, helping save Jewish lives from Nazi persecution.
Lois Lowry should have faced the whole issue of war and the Holocaust head on. She shies away from it too much.
Even though Number the Stars takes place entirely in cities and towns (not right on the battlefield) it still gives us a powerful image of what it means to be living during wartime.