My Favourite Character in Faraway Home

Thursday 14th March 2013 by Support

Pupils from Stratford National School in Rathgar, Dublin, describe the characters from Faraway Home who made the biggest impression on them.

My favourite character in Faraway Home is Peewee's Granny. She is not the strongest character, but she is my favourite.

She was described as 'a figure so small and withered that she was lost in the cushioned armchair, like a tiny baby in a big cradle.' She had beady eyes in a wrinkled face, framed by a few strands of thin silvery hair, through which pink scalp peeped. She went to Church every Sunday and Mrs Crawford said that her bark was worse than her bite. Peewee told Karl one day that his Granny hadn't gotten out of her bed at the previous night's air raid warning, saying that it would take more than Hitler to get her out of her warm bed.

I thought it was funny when she went to the football match and was cheering on Peewee and Wee Billy, and I like the way she called Judy 'the wean from Dublin'. After a while she became quite friendly with Judy and used to tell her about her days in the York Street linen mill.
by Adam, age 11

 

My favourite character is Judy. I just like the way she started out angry, not wanting to go to Northern Ireland. She didn't have a choice and she went after some persuasion and she got nicer as the story went on.

Her first experiences at the farm are awful. First she wrecks her good clothes in the chicken pen after not doing the job properly. Then she gets chased down the road by the so-called bull, which turns out to be Alice, one of the local Millisle cows. She goes back to the farm on her holidays to get to know Karl more, but by the time she gets there something has happened, the death of Karl’s uncle. She has a good heart and is very kind to Karl through his experience of his Uncle Rudy dying at a concentration camp.

I think the most important moment in the book is when Karl, Judy and Peewee try to help Karl escape the farm and join the airforce. When Karl changes his mind they stop at the pub that Peewee's parents are in charge of and find out about Wee Billy dying. Judy helps Peewee and Granny through Wee Billy's death. She is a changed person.
by Alex F, age 12

 

My favourite characters from Faraway Home would have to be Karl Muller, Judy Simons and Leni (Karl's next door neighbour in Vienna).

Karl is my special favourite character because he is a kind, considerate and understanding person. He understood why he had to leave his parents, relatives and his dog Goldi behind in Austria. He understood why Mr and Mrs Gould adopted Rosa. There were a lot of people to take care of ... for instance, his family in Austria, Rosa and himself. He had some really tough times, like when Rosa broke her leg and smashed the china face doll to pieces and when he got a letter saying that Goldi had been destroyed, that his uncle Rudi had committed suicide and that his family were being deported.

My true favourite is Judy. In the course of the book, Judy developed her personality. She changed from being a stubborn girl who didn't want anything to do with the war to a girl who could change the world and who looked at life in a very different way. She wrote letters to Karl and signed herself 'Your friend' in the first one, but when Lisl was out of the picture she wrote 'Yours ever'.
Like Karl's headmaster, who was killed for sheltering Jews and gypsies, Leni risked her life to help Karl's family. She warned them about Kristallnacht, even though her husband supported the Nazis. During the war, she secretly slipped messages to Karl and to Karl's family. I think she was very truthful, trustworthy and loyal. I also think she was the kind of person you could depend on to help you through your problems.
by Anisha, age 10

 

We read a class novel called Faraway Home and my favourite character is Yakobi. I think he is a good character because he tries his best to help the refugee children not to worry about their families. For example, one night in the story there was an air-raid warning and all the children went downstairs to hide. People were playing cards, or games like 'I spy', and some were singing. But Yakobi noticed a little boy that was always crying. The children thought he was crying because he was missing his parents, and they were right. Yakobi went to this boy and started talking to him about things to take his mind off his family.

Another example of Yakobi's kindness is when Karl’s little sister Rosa had an accident. On the way back from the hospital Karl sat in a cart beside Yakobi, and complained that he had to be a father and a mother to Rosa. Yakobi said that he was often angry himself, about everything that had happened to them. He told Karl that when he felt like that he played his saxophone. Karl asked if it helped. 'My sax was the only thing I was able to bring with me from home,' said Yakobi. 'But now we have to think about the future, not the past.'

That's why I like Yakobi. He is not selfish and he cares about other people, not just himself. He is different from anyone else.
by Leonid, age 11

 

I have just finished reading Faraway Home a class novel chosen by our Mr Hanley. There are lots of people in the story that I admired but I really admired Rosa, Karl's sister for being so cute, honest and a caring little child. I liked the way she was always smiling and cheerful, not knowing what was happening to her own family, to all her Jewish neighbours and to Goldi, her beloved dog.

Rosa is very young and she feels unhappy in her new family with the Goulds. She is homesick, even though they are very nice to her. By reading the book, I could understand her loneliness by being taken away from all her family and being transferd to another. I perfectly knew why she threw away the new doll that the Goulds had given her at the start instead of Mitzy, the doll that her parents had given to her back in Vienna.
by Beatrice, age 10

 

My favourite character would have had to have been Peewee. He was also not at home, like all the other refugees. Peewee seemed to be an easy person to get on with. Fortunately he made some refugee friends. It would have been hard for Karl to learn English without Peewee. He also helped the refugee camp football team with himself and his big brother Wee Billy, who coached the camp team. The first scene where Peewee appeared was with Judy, Karl and the cow. In this scene Judy was chased by the cow which she thought was a bull. I think that this was also the time when Judy started to mature. At this point Peewee, Karl and Judy all became good friends.

Peewee's grandmother began to like Judy. Peewee's mother liked and trusted Karl and Judy. So you see that Peewee's family play a big role in the story.

During the bombing of Belfast Peewee's brother was unfortunately killed. The loss of Wee Billy was an example of the terrible truth of the war. This would have happened to many families in the war.
by Timothy Alkin

 

Faraway Home is a novel set in the 1930s. Its story revolves around two children, Karl and Rosa Muller from Vienna, and their journey to Ireland. Their family sent them, as they knew the war was imminent. During the long and arduous trip, Karl befriended Eva. She's my favourite character.
A native of Prague, Czechoslovakia, Eva was thirteen, although she was very mature. Rather than dwelling on her own homesickness, she mothered the younger children to distract herself. Her advice was always good and she was a sympathetic listener.

When the refugees are working at Millisle Eva shows she is a loyal and supportive friend to Karl. She helps him when his little sister is injured. When Karl is obviously upset by a letter, bringing sad news of his family, she writes to another friend asking her to help comfort him.
If I was ever in such a situation Eva is the type of friend I would like to encounter.

I recommend this interesting and informative book to readers of all ages. 
by Blaise, age 12

 

'Karl gazed at the rigid figures of his parents, trying to fix their image forever in his mind.' He was burdened with what seemed to him like the world on his back. His mind was always blazing with 'why's and 'how's.

Inside himself, he was in agony with the anguish of having to grow up so quickly, and the loss of his family. Put on a train to forget the awful blood sky of Kristallnacht, the journey to Belfast with his little sister Rosa just loaded the bombs on his mind.

Running away from the blinding sights and the loneliness of being ostracised, he was about to let go, fall like a bomb, but he always kept a stiff upper lip.

Inside, all his worries were being tossed onto a fire, hoping he would turn into ashes like so many innocent Jewish souls. He really grew up more than he knew. He held on. He never looked down.
by Stephanie, age 12

 

Book:
Contributor/Speaker:
Marilyn Taylor