A Librarian Reads…

Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler’s Shadow by Susan Campbell Bartoletti

As Adolph Hitler rose to power in the wake of the Great War, the people of Germany were ready for change. Poor, hungry, and angry after Germany’s defeat and the humiliation of the Treaty of Versailles, they wanted someone to show them a better way. And no one was more invested in Germany’s future than its youth. Even before he became Chancellor, Hitler had started the Hitler Youth movement, encouraging boys and girls in health, exercise, and loyalty. As his power grew, more and more children were eager to follow him. This book shows how the children of Germany fell under, and often out of, Hitler’s spell. Some sacrificed themselves for the cause. Others only did what they felt was their duty. And many rebelled and paid the ultimate price for freedom.

This book does not shy away from difficult topics. The author presents the facts as they were, with no judgement on either side, showing the many different kinds of people and how they reacted to their situation. This book is thorough and enlightening. Recommended for junior high and up.



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