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The Silver Sword

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This book is about a Polish family living in Warsaw during World War II and what happens when their fanmily is torn apart.It is about the different journeys they take and their determination and hope that they will eventually be reunited as a family.

The main themes of this book are courage, faith, unselfishnes, perserverance, loyalty and honesty. These are all shown through the book by each character even though they are on different journeys.

As the family is seperated, they find themselves on different journeys but experience some of the same issues such as loneliness,desperation and fear.

The main characters are the Balicki family. The father, Joseph, the mother Margrit, and the children, Ruth, Edek and Bronia. The other main character is an orphan called Jan.

Josephs journey begins when he is taken from his family and sent to a Nazi prison camp.Joseph knows that if he stays at the camp he will die. So with all his courage and strength he escapes and makes his way back to Warsaw to find his family. Instead he only finds his house in a pile of rubble. He fears for his family and as he searches through the rubble he finds his Silver Sword. This becomes a symbol of hope and becomes very very important in identifying the children later on. He gives it to a boy called Jan with the hope that he will somehow find his children.

Their mother is also taken away and the children go to live in the forest with the other Polish people. Edek joins the underground network, smuggling food. He is captured by Nazis and they worry that they will never see him again. Edek was their life line. He organised their food and kept the family together. Ruth and Bronia fear for him but also have faith the someday he will return.


One day while Ruth was teaching in the cellar, Bronia finds Jan on a pile of rubble, terribly sick. They nurse him back to health. Jan tells them about the Silver Sword. The Nazis are retreating, and the Russians are in control of Poland.

The children get help from a Russian soldier, and they find Edek. After all they had been through they had always had hope the he was alive.

Eventually the whole family is reunited in Swizerland and they make their home in the mountains.

In spite of everything they have gone through, they beat the odds. They overcame starvation, death, being captured and having to look after themselves. Each character shows an endless supply of perserverance and endurance with the hope that they will survive and eventually be reunited.

This book was written in 1951, 6 years after the war ended. As a 13 year old, it is very hard for me to imagine myself or my family in this position. Wars are still happening in the world today, and families are stll getting torn apart. Its very hard to understand.