Making Bombs for Hitler
What worked: This is an emotional tale of Lida, a young Ukrainian girl, who is stolen from her home and sent to a slave camp to work for the Nazis. Little has been known about this part of WWII. What readers see is the horrific plight of Ukrainians that are viewed as subhuman by the Nazis and forced into terrible living conditions.
Lida's journey takes us to the camps, where she is dehumanized and made into a slave. She's forced to work under inhuman conditions. Yet, she finds some friendship and even hope there. The one thing that continues to drive her is the need to be reunited with her younger sister, who also was stolen.
The images of human cruelty are throughout this story. One example is what the Nazis did with children under the age of 12. In this novel they are sent to the 'hospital' and literally drained of their blood, which is sent to the front to help wounded Nazi soldiers. Even there we witness a small act of human kindness where one of the slaves, Juli, tries to comfort the children as they die.
Readers also see what happens after the war to the survivors of the Nazi camps. Those who are from the Ukraine are treated as enemies by the Soviets and either killed or sent to reeducation camps.
Powerful, gripping tale of a young girl who is stolen from her Ukrainian home and made into a slave for the Nazis. Woven throughout are small acts of kindness and the power of the human spirit to survive. I highly recommend the series which includes STOLEN GIRL, the story of Larissa, Lida's younger sister, and THE WAR BELOW, Luka's story, a boy she friends during their ordeal.