Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Hoose (Moonbird) vividly recounts the true story of the courageous and brazen teens who inspired the Danish resistance movement in WWII. Angered and embarrassed by his nation's lack of opposition to the German invasion, 15-year-old Knud Pedersen, his older brother, and a few classmates formed the secret Churchill Club (named for the British prime minister they admired). For five months in 1942, club members committed daring acts of sabotage, often from their bikes and mostly in broad daylight ("Arson became our game. We took to carrying a small quantity of petrol with us... stuffing the canister in a school bag "). Hoose's narrative alternates with Pedersen's verbatim recollections (taken from a weeklong interview with him in 2012). Though readers initially may have trouble knowing when Pedersen's quotations end and the author's segues begin, this gripping story quickly gathers momentum, and the shifts between narrators flow smoothly. Archival photos break up the text, while an epilogue details what happened to each young resister after his imprisonment and the war's end. A bibliography and source notes conclude this inspiring account. Ages 12-18. (May) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Kirkus Book Review
A handful of Danish teens takes on the occupying Nazis is this inspiring true story of courageous resistance. Unlike Norway, which was also invaded on April 9, 1940, the Danish government did little to resist German occupation. Some teenagers, like 15-year-old Knud Pedersen, were ashamed of their nation's leaders and the adult citizens who passively accepted and even collaborated with the occupiers. With his older brother and a handful of schoolmates, Knud resolved to take action. Naming themselves the Churchill Club in honor of the fiery British prime minister, the young patriots began their resistance efforts with vandalism and quickly graduated to countless acts of sabotage. Despite the lack of formal organization and planning, this small band of teenagers managed to collect an impressive cache of weapons and execute raids that would impress professionally trained commandos. The Churchill Club was eventually captured and imprisoned by the Germans, but their heroic exploits helped spark a nationwide resistance movement. As he did in Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice (2009), Hoose tells this largely unknown story with passion and clarity, providing exactly the right background information to contextualize events for readers. He makes excellent use of his extensive interviews with Pedersen, quoting him at length and expertly interweaving his words into the narrative to bring it alive. A superbly told, remarkable true story and an excellent addition to stories of civilian resistance in World War II. (photos, bibliography, chapter notes) (Nonfiction. 12-18) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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