The book, Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry describes how a girl and her family must protect her best friend's Jewish family, from the Nazis during World War II. The main characters, Annemarie and Ellen are best friends. Annemarie Johansen, a Christian, is a long-legged ten-year-old girl, who has blonde hair, and a courageous personality. She has a younger sister Kirsti, who is very stubborn, and an older sister, Lise, who died before getting married. Ellen Rosen, a Jew, is smart, with curly brown hair. She is an only child living with her parents. The story takes place in Copenhagen, Denmark, during World War II against the Nazis, in about 1943. The conflict is that the Nazis have suddenly begun to stop all Jewish business, and have begun to relocate and arrest all Jews. Annemarie's family must protect the Rosens, their close friends, by helping them escape to Sweden. Annemarie learns that it is easier to be brave when you don't know the full truth. .
In the beginning of the book, Annemarie was afraid because the Nazis were trying to capture all of the Jews, including Ellen, her best friend. The Nazis forced the rabbi, of a nearby synagogue, to tell the names, and homes of all Danish Jews. Then the Nazis would come to each house, and capture each Jew. After realizing the situation, the Johansen's leave Peter(Lise's future husband) to take Ellen's parents somewhere safe while Ellen must act as if she was Lise Johansen. In the night, the Nazis come to the Johansen's house, for they know they are the Rosen's friends, and they inspect the house. They find Ellen, and her dark hair, and think she is a Jew, but Mr. Johansen shows a picture of baby Lise, who used to have dark colored hair. Having no evidence of where the Rosens are, the soldiers leave.
In the middle of the book, they go to Uncle Henrik's house, for the city is too dangerous. Annemarie also changes in this part of the book. She learns that it is easier to be brave when you don't know the full truth.