Bartoletti has taken one episode from her Newbery Honor Book, HITLER YOUTH, and fleshed it out into a thought-provoking novel. When 16-year-old Helmut Hubner listens to the BBC news on an illegal short-wave radio, he quickly discovers Germany is lying to the people. Sentenced to death and waiting in a jail cell, Helmut’s story emerges in a series of flashbacks that show his growth from a naive child caught up in the patriotism of the times, to a sensitive and mature young man who thinks for himself. From School Library Journal Grade 6–9—In the newly formed Third Reich, Hitler’s initial political doctrine is filled with hopeful solutions for a country plagued with unemployment, poverty, and a post-World War I feeling of defeat. Propaganda and promises quickly turn to oppressive new laws including the required participation in the Hitler Youth.
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