The Anne Frank House is interested in making Anne Frank’s story accessible to the widest possible audience. After good experiences with two earlier educational graphic novels: De Ontdekking (A Family Secret) and De Zoektocht (The Search) – respectively about World War II and the persecution of the Jews – a decision was taken by the Anne Frank House to commission a graphic novel about Anne Frank’s life.
The style selected, referred to as graphic non-fiction – a standard comic book format with a long tradition in the United States – is gaining popularity as a genre in Europe. Together with New York publishing company Hill & Wang, the Anne Frank House approached Sid Jacobson (writer) and Ernest Colón. This experienced creative team wholeheartedly dedicated themselves to the biography about Anne Frank, supported by experts from the Anne Frank House. ‘A crown on our careers,’ according to the duo.
This book begins with a look at Anne Frank’s parents and the early years of sisters Anne and Margot in Frankfurt, Germany. It closes with Otto Frank – the only one of the eight from the Secret Annex who survived the wartime persecution of the Jews – returning to Amsterdam, followed by the publication of Anne's diary and the opening of the Anne Frank House.
, Pen name Lies, Anne’s classmate & friend
What a wonderful book. I think it’s a very important work
to help children get a better understanding of that entire period.
The graphic biography was released in the Netherlands at the beginning of July. The American edition appeared in late September, followed by other language versions. An educational edition of the graphic biography was also published in September in the Netherlands for use in secondary school curriculums. This edition was supplemented with a comprehensive teaching package including background stories, a timeline from 1929 to 1945, several group assignments for students related to the biography’s themes and a teacher's guide.
The combination of history, memoir, and richly detailed graphic representations creates a powerful whole, a beautiful and important graphic novel that will be enjoyed by adults and children alike.