Please, write your thoughts on chapter 3, “Vranyo, the Pretending.” (Relevant study guide question #2)
While this chapter overall was one of my favorites, I particularly enjoyed the Aunt Polya passage. The scene of nursery school children under the thumb of an intimidating, strong character like Aunt Polya reminded me of many of the stories my parents have recounted about growing up in American parochial school systems with nuns for teachers. Genka and Elena’s escape from the playground was playful, thrilling, and still innocent. It was everything I would expect from children their age. I think this part of the story is so easily relatable because for the most part kids behave similarly despite the country they live or their background. I also love that at such a young age Elena was aware and remembers still the game of vranyo and how she modeled her own actions after the pretending she witnessed her parents and sister doing.
What a difference in issues when compared to the beginning of the book. We went from worrying about getting enough food to making sure that there is room for dessert and picking a career. Things are certainly different during times of war.
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