Between Shades of Gray

Between Shades of Gray


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Between Shades of Gray: Chapter 73 Summary & Analysis

They are sent back to work as soon as the storm breaks. Lina sees that some jurtas have been completely snowed in, and people have died inside. They must walk three kilometers to gather firewood for the NKVD. The bald man demands that Lina give him her mittens in exchange for information. He tells Lina that Elena knows why she was deported, and it is because of her uncle, Petras Vilkas. Since Lina’s aunt is German, Kostas helped the family repatriate to Germany. The Soviets found out, and Kostas was charged with accessory. In a flashback, Lina recalls hearing Kostas talk about repatriation. A letter from Joana reveals that Lina’s uncle has been acting strangely, doing things like packing up books. She hears Elena and Kostas discuss other places Joana’s family can escape to, such as Sweden or America. Back in the snow, Lina realizes that Joana’s freedom has cost her hers.
The first snowstorm arrives in September, and it already brings about casualties. The bald man tactlessly breaks Elena’s trust and tells Lina that her family was deported because her father helped her cousins repatriate to Germany. Lina is angry, and wonders if her cousin is living in the lap of luxury while she struggles to survive in the Arctic. Though no mention is made as to what happens to Joana, given the turmoil in Germany, there is no telling what has happened to her family. Lina has always looked up to and admired her parents’ generosity, but now she feels that this time their selflessness has gone too far.
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