"A fine, taut novel full of understanding." (starred review)
From the Publisher
Set in the present day, Felix is now an 80-year-old physician living in Australia, no longer the terrified little boy trying to survive the Holocaust. However, when his six-year-old granddaughter, Zelda, comes to stay with him while her parents do humanitarian work in Darfur, painful memories come to the surface. Hoping to be as brave as her namesake, who saved her grandfather by selflessly giving up her own life, Zelda finds herself terrorized by bullies and struggling to fit in. Felix senses something's wrong, and is there for his granddaughter. But when bush fires threaten the family, the pair need each other more then ever. Childhood angst and memories combine to create a compelling narrative. ONCE and THEN are the first two books in the Once series.
While her parents are working in Africa, Zelda is living with her grandfather, Holocaust survivor Felix Salinger, in Australia, when a disaster leads them both to deal with unresolved feelings about the first Zelda, Felix's childhood friend.