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About Sara Zaske
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An Entertaining, Enlightening Look at the Art of Raising Self-Reliant, Independent Children Based on One American Mom’s Experiences in Germany
An NPR "Staff Pick" and One of the NPR Book Concierge's"Best Books of the Year"
When Sara Zaske moved from Oregon to Berlin with her husband and toddler, she knew the transition would be challenging, especially when she became pregnant with her second child. She was surprised to discover that German parents give their children a great deal of freedom—much more than Americans. In Berlin, kids walk to school by themselves, ride the subway alone, cut food with sharp knives, and even play with fire. German parents did not share her fears, and their children were thriving. Was she doing the opposite of what she intended, which was to raise capable children? Why was parenting culture so different in the States?
Through her own family’s often funny experiences as well as interviews with other parents, teachers, and experts, Zaske shares the many unexpected parenting lessons she learned from living in Germany. Achtung Baby reveals that today's Germans know something that American parents don't (or have perhaps forgotten) about raising kids with “selbstandigkeit” (self-reliance), and provides practical examples American parents can use to give their own children the freedom they need to grow into responsible, independent adults.
She's just an ordinary, 15-year-old California girl with a few problems. She talks too much. She has a crush on a guy in her school. She worries about her dad who is a Marine in Afghanistan.
Then, there's her new friend, Violet Starkey. The weirdest girl in school, Violet comes from a group of magical people who claim to be the first on earth.
When Cassie discovers that Violet has powers over nature, she will do anything to be her friend--all for the chance Violet might help bring her dad home.
But Cassie isn't the only one who wants Violet's powers, and she soon finds out just how dangerous it is to be the true friend of one of the most powerful magical beings in the world.