Between the Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

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Ruta Sepetys is the author for Between the Shades of Gray, a novel that captures the truth of Siberian camps and the annexation of the Balkans by Stalin. Ruta Sepetys got the idea to write this fictional story when she visited her family in Lithuania and got the chance to discover more about her heritage. She got very fascinated about her family’s struggle to keep memories of her grandparents because of the annexation of Lithuania to the USSR. This conflict urged her to find out more about the feelings and people’s memoirs during this period in World War II so, she started interviewing the survivors from the Siberian gulags and gathered information to write her novel. The book was also inspired by her father, Jonas Sepetys, who escape…show more content…
During the time in Between the Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys describes the historical period after Hitler and Stalin signed the nonaggression pact in 1939 during World War II, which states that both countries will not attack each other nor support any country at war with the other. The pact was a shock to the world primarily because Hitler hated communism, however Hitler needed to work out something with Stalin so that his plan wouldn’t collapse. The pact wasn't only a safe bubble for Hitler but also it benefited both countries by agreeing to increase trade between each other. This pact was a win-win for both countries, Germany protected itself from having to fight a two front war at the beginning of World War II and Soviet Union acquired land which included Poland and the Baltic States. However in 1941, Germany broke the treaty when they attacked the Soviet Union in less than two years of sign the pact, moreover this pack was supposed to last about ten years. German Nazis launched an attack on Poland from the wast with about fifteen thousand men, airplanes and tanks. Additionally, in the novel another historic event was happening Stalin’s gulags. Joseph Stalin had a system of forced labor camps known as Gulag which is an acronym for the Soviet
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