How to Befriend a Butterfly 06/08/20
Publisher: Andersen Press
Even if - somehow - you'd never heard of Anne Frank and her diary, this fictionalised account of Peter (a teenage Dutch Jew, hiding from the Nazis with his family and their friends, the Franks, in a tiny annex) would make an impact.
Constantly afraid, living silently, secretively, tormented by the tension between 'outside' and 'inside' and by terrible dreams, the threat of discovery constantly hovers.
Dogar's novel doesn't diminish Anne's diary; it extends the life of this multifaceted document in a striking, imaginative way. The emotional and sexual tension between Anne, Peter - and the diary - is intense and sensitively handled and the writing is simple and poetic in this meditation on the power of written testimony and the nature of evil.