This slender little paperback, with its ample leading, simple sentence structure and largish print, is enough to restore one’s faith in mankind and perfect to introduce the Holocaust to readers as young as 10 years old and as old as 14, although the stories all involve teens. The authors point out that these brave people were not adult resistance fighters, but just youngsters who willingly placed their own lives in jeopardy for the sake of saving Jews because they knew it was the right thing to do. Among the teens are Maria of Poland, Henry and Lilianne from Belgium, Hilda in Holland, Ferenc from Hungary, and Preben from Denmark. This well-written celebration of goodness reveals that in the most horrible situations imaginable, young people possess the guts, faith, and intelligence to aid others even at great personal risk. As for the young people of today, it is a reminder that only by following one’s conscience can “man’s inhumanities to man” be prevented; and the place to practice this dictum is in one’s own classroom and neighborhood.
Marcia W. Posner, Ph.D., of the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County, is the library and program director. An author and playwright herself, she loves reviewing for JBW and reading all the other reviews and articles in this marvelous periodical.