The compelling story of two Jewish teenage sisters struggling to survive the Holocaust in Nazi occupied Poland. They are both talented: Ariana Elizabeth Bellak (born Ariana Spiegel), a child prodigy, performs on stage in Warsaw shortly before the war. She sings, plays piano, and recites poems. She also appears in several feature films by famous Polish directors and is commonly referred to as the "Polish Shirley Temple". She is nine years old when the war starts. Renia is more introverted, romantic and sensitive. She is a gifted poet who keeps a diary spanning the years 1939 to 1942. Ariana, who currently lives in New York, narrates her story on screen. Her narration intertwines with text from Renia's diary recited by Aleksandra Bernatek, an actress from their home town of Przemysl.