16 year old Maltese student pioneers anthology about Anne Frank

A 16-year-old Maltese student has pioneered the publication of an anthology on Anne Frank by a number of writers around the world.

Joy Baldacchino told TVM that writing was one of her greatest passions alongside reading. The 12-year-old read Anne Frank’s book about a Jewish girl of the same age, who lived through the Holocaust and who wrote a diary about her experiences, and said that this had a profound effect on her.

Two years later, in a Facebook group for people interested in the Holocaust, she met Tim Witthome, an editor from the United States.

Whittome asked Joy to send him one of her stories, and after reading it, encouraged her to write about Anne Frank. It was here that the anthology was born, with 19 other authors joining Joy in the publication ‘Meeting Anne Frank’ which was published two months ago.

A quote from Joy, who is the youngest writer in this book, is also on the back cover: “I saw Anne Frank as a friend. I never had the chance to meet.”

Joy says that her writing deals with the personal story of her encounter with Anne Frank, and the effect this diary has had on her.

Joy explains that when she first read the book she felt an affinity with Anne Frank, and today she is 16 years old, wondering what advice she would give Anne Frank in the situations she found herself in. “Over time, I still relate to her in one way or another.”

Last week Joy gave a signed copy of the book to the library at the secondary school she attends, at St. Benedict College.


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