“I guess sometimes the search for freedom is enough to keep one alive.”
Melitta and her family’s experience in Nazi Germany in WWII was something that no one wants to contemplate, but it happened and she has written a short, but stirring memoir about it. In Weimar, Germany, Melitta was born on September 3, 1944 and she was taken from her mother in the hospital in order to perform experiments on her. However, miraculously, she was returned to her family 6 months later with no side effects resulting from the time away. Her story covers the frightening journey her family took for freedom and how they finally found peace.
Melitta eventually moved to the United States along with some of her siblings and was asked if she would give any comments to Americans regarding freedom. She replied: “I have come to deeply love this country and what it stands for, but much has changed and is changing. We must be vigilant against those who wittingly and unwittingly destroy our freedom. Bad politicians can do that.”
There is a lot of impact squeezed into this short book and I recommend it to people of all ages.
Thank you to Melitta Strandberg and Bostick Communications for giving me the opportunity to review this book. Also reviewed on LibraryThing, Amazon and GoodReads.
It is a tragic story of lost innocence, guilt, and regret. Hanna is a mysterious older woman who becomes involved with a young, 15-year old boy named Michael. Michael is drawn in by Hanna’s mystery and enjoys reading to her during their meetings. When Hanna appears again a few years later–to Michael’s horror and surprise–she is not who he thought she was. Or was she? I miss this kind of story where the characters are mysterious and secretive and they never truly reveal their feelings throughout the story.
H. Peter Nennhaus grew up in Berlin during WWII; a volatile time in German and world history. The book is different in that he tells the story from a German boy’s point of view who saw things differently at that time in history. You can see Mr. Nennhaus’s interest in history by reading the historical events in this book. He tries to link these events to what was happening in his life at that same time.
A memorable scene was when his father, who worked for the German Ministry of Agriculture, was trying to deter the young 15-year-old Peter from wanting to join Hitler’s war.
It was not how he said it; he spoke with fatherly concern, earnest and like a friend. It was what he said. It not only contradicted my innermost feelings and desires, but it also violated my idealism, which had been burned and hardened in the patriotic kiln of war….I was on the threshold of what I had been waiting for these past five years, and now Father told me it was wrong.
Despite his dad’s hopes, Peter was drafted at 16 years old to attend pre-military training at the Adolf-Hitler School in the Swiss Alps and he finds out first hand that the war is going no where.
The prose went back and forth from historical events to events happening in his families lives which only seemed to slow down my reading.
Mr. Nennhaus’s account of his life at this frightening time in history is verypersonal and heartbreaking and I commend him and his family for the courage and perseverance they displayed in trying to survive such a horrible event.