This book is about the Kindertransport that took Jewish children out of Germany when Hitler was in power. Peter, a small butcher’s son with a musical gift and a love of the violin, is the main character. Peter is sent away on a Kindertransport train at the age of 11 and the book follows the next seven years as Peter grows from a scared boy into a man fighting in the rebellion against the Nazi’s. This book takes a unique look at real life events from the fictional characters of children who left Germany on the Kindertransport.
All I can say is, wow! I have read the Diary of Anne Frank and other books based in this time period in history. I want my children to read this. Perhaps not suitable for elementary school children due to the violence, but if you want your children to know history (and not just the dry and watered down version in textbooks) then get this book for them. The author somehow manages to portray the horror of concentration camps, the brutality inflicted upon the Jews, and the harsh and hopeless living environments and still keep it okay for junior high children to read. Some of the violence and senseless slaughter is portrayed as people are shot right in front of the character’s eyes. There is some allusion to young girls being forced against their will, people being treated as slaves, as less than dogs, and the abject depravity that those who followed Hitler’s command perpetrated on the Jewish people.
I am a writer and an editor and I had work I was supposed to be doing, but from the time I read the first line of this book, I was hooked. I read it in two nights and didn’t do any work other than read this book. Even the most imaginative author cannot come up with a story that rivals the horror of real life reflected in this book. I think it is very important for the younger generation to know the stark naked truth of what really happened rather than the glossed over history book version that they get in school. I hope youngsters will get this book, read it, and cry and rail against the fates at the suffering that these people endured at the hands of someone who convinced a nation to follow them in the wholesale slaughter of a people.
Disclaimer: I received a free ebook copy of this book from Net Gally in exchange for writing a review. I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions are my own.