Milkweed, written by Newbery Medal victor Jerry Spinelli, is a story that recounts the life of an innocent boy during World War 2. The story begins with the main character being pursued since he stole a bit of bread. During his pursuit, he fell down to the floor, and an outcast helped him get up and escape. Unexpectedly, the city is under attack and they search for cover. The outcast presents himself as Uri, Uri took him to a barn where multiple orphans are taking shelter.
They ask him whether he is a Jew and he didn’t know how to answer the question. The orphans were irritated with him since he didn’t know what a jew was so one of the orphans recommends that they send him away to a camp as a joke. Later on, as the bombings decrease, the orphans moved to a better safe house. The new safe house that they moved into, was a barbershop in the middle of town.
While in the new safe house, Uri gave him an identity since he didn’t know anything about himself or his origin. His new identity is Misha Pilsudski and he is a Russian gypsy. As time passes by, he becomes a close acquaintance with the orphans because he would go to places that is hard to access In those places, he would steal food and tools that is necessary. Throughout his time robbing places, Misha meets a Jewish a named Janina Milgrom.
Misha ends up getting to know Janina really well and considers himself to be a part of her family. The Milgrom’s as well as other Jews are being compelled to move to the Warsaw Ghetto. Willingly, Misha ended up moving in with them to the ghetto because he considers them family. During his time in the ghetto, Misha would sneak out and bring the Milgrom’s food. One day, Misha ran into Uri in a decent inn and is warned to escape the ghetto. Uri told Misha that they are going to move the inhabitants to a labor camp. Misha tries to warn his family and others about the trains and how the ghetto’s inhabitants are not being migrated and liberated but nobody believed him.
One day he gets back home from a food run and finds out that everybody has been relocated. Enraged that they didn’t take him, he tries turning himself in multiple times and fails. As time passes by, Misha moved to a ranch and lives there until the war ends. Once the war ended, Misha relocates to the United States.
Once in the United States, he changed his name to Jack Milgrom and eventually gets married to a girls named Vivian. His wife ends up leaving him because of his behavior, Jack’s behavior would be strange sometimes because of his past. One day his daughter Katherine, ran into him. Katherine presents his granddaughter, Wendy. She said that he can pick her middle name.
Jack ends up choosing ¨Poppynoodle¨.