Between Shades of Gray

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by slcrews
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Between Shades of Gray

Hope vs Hopelessness

Throughout the novel, the characters struggle with having hope or becoming hopeless. Lina shows her hope throughout the novel by drawing for her father. “I’d write everything down, draw it all. I would help Papa find us.” (pg 49) Her mother showed hope throughout the book as well. Her hope helped many people to survive. At one point in the book she is talking to her daughter, Lina, about her father. “‘Kostas,’ she sighed. ‘He was so clumsy, but he was so sincere. Sometimes there is such beauty in awkwardness. There's love and emotion trying to express itself, but at the time, it just ends up being awkward.” (pg 124) Moments like these are what give the characters hope and help them to survive. When characters became hopeless, they did not survive. When Ona lost her baby she lost hope. There is a moment in the book where the characters are excited because the Germans are in Lithuania. At this moment people begin singing and hugging one another, but not Ona. She had lost her hope. And because of this she was killed.

About the author: Ruta was born in Michigan. She is the youngest of three in a family of creative minds. She attended Hillsdale College and majored in internationalfinance and lived in Europe.After moving to Los Angeles, Ruta "had anepiphany that (she) needed to moveto Tennessee.It was in TN that shefound her husband. It was her husbandthat suggested she write a novel. So Ruta wrote a book about her Lithuanian heritage; Between Shades of Gray. Between Shades of Gray is her first published novel.There is a soundtrack to go with the novel.

Lina is 15 at the time she is taken and is the protagonist of the novel. She is a talented artist.

Elena and Kostas Vilkas are Lina's and Jonas' parents. Their father is separated from them when they are first taken by the NKVD. Their mother is very caring and makes sure everyone is well cared for.

Jonas is 10 at the time he is taken and is Lina's little brother. He has to grow up quickly and is able to mature throughout the course of the novel.

Lina is an artist living in Lithuania while under Stalin's rule. One night the NKVD soliders take her family and forced them onto cattle cars. Lina, her mother, and brother are on one car; her father on another. Lina and her family are driven across the country to Siberia to work in a labor camp. Lina meets Andrius and the two form a friendship. Soon Lina and her family are taken deep into the artic circle to work. It is through her art the Lina finds solace. Do they survive the winter? What becomes of her father?


Andrius Arvydas is 17 yearx old. He finds his family in a bad situation, but he uses this to help others. He befriends Lina and her family and when they are split up, vows that he will see her again.


Between Shades of Grayby Ruta SepetysGlog by Sabrina C


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