|Don't tell the Nazis|
Author: Skrypuch, Marsha Forchuk
It is June 1941 and after the brutal rule of the Soviets the people of Krystia's small Ukrainian village are inclined to look on the German invaders as liberators; but soon the Nazis start rounding up Jewish Ukrainians, and Krystia is faced with a terrible choice--risk everything by helping her Jewish friends and neighbors to hide, or save herself and her family by doing nothing.
Kirkus Reviews (10/01/19)
School Library Journal (12/01/19)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/12/19)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 12/01/2019 Gr 5 Up—Following up on earlier titles such as Making Bombs for Hitler and Stolen Girl, Skrypuch again crafts an evocative story based on real events. Krystia, around 12 years old, is living under Soviet occupation in a small Ukrainian village in 1941. When the Germans arrive, the townspeople are initially celebratory, anticipating that their lives will improve, but their hopes are soon dashed. Krystia is not Jewish, but she and her family are horrified as their Jewish neighbors begin to be persecuted. When more German people arrive in the village, Krystia learns about the varying levels of classification used by the Nazis. The "Master Race" consists of Aryans, Germans, and Volksdeutsche. Anyone else, including Ukrainians, are considered "lesser" or subhuman, with Jewish people at the bottom of the list. Many Jewish villagers are killed outright, while Krystia's family slowly starves as they are forced to give their food and livestock to the Volksdeutsche settlers. When a Nazi commander discovers hidden Jews in Krystia's home, her mother is killed for the crime, and Krystia is forced to flee. The relative isolation of the rural setting and the Ukrainian point of view set this novel apart from the majority of World War II accounts, and Krystia is believable as a young girl forced into heroism by extraordinary circumstances. VERDICT A harrowing, suspenseful follow-up for readers of Skrypuch's earlier books or Ruta Sepetys's Between Shades of Gray.—Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, St. Christopher's School, Richmond - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.