Thursday, December 13, 2018

The Plot to Kill Hitler by Patricia McCormick

Perfect for fans of suspenseful nonfiction such as books by Steve Sheinkin, this is a page-turning narrative about Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a pastor and pacifist who became an unlikely hero during World War II and took part in a plot to kill Hitler. Written by two-time National Book Award finalist Patricia McCormick, author of Sold and Never Fall Down and coauthor of the young reader’s edition of I Am Malala.

It was April 5, 1943, and the Gestapo would arrive any minute. Dietrich Bonhoeffer had been expecting this day for a long time. He had put his papers in order—and left a few notes specifically for Hitler’s men to see. Two SS agents climbed the stairs and told the boyish-looking Bonhoeffer to come with them. He calmly said good-bye to his parents, put his Bible under his arm, and left. Upstairs there was proof, in his own handwriting, that this quiet young minister was part of a conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler.

This compelling, brilliantly researched account includes the remarkable discovery that Bonhoeffer was one of the first people to provide evidence to the Allies that Jews were being deported to death camps. It takes readers from his privileged early childhood to the studies and travel that would introduce him to peace activists around the world—eventually putting this gentle, scholarly pacifist on a deadly course to assassinate one of the most ruthless dictators in history. The Plot to Kill Hitler provides fascinating insights into what makes someone stand up for what’s right when no one else is standing with you. It is a question that every generation must answer again and again.

With black-and-white photographs, fascinating sidebars, and thoroughly researched details, this book should be essential reading.

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
One of my 2018 bookish goals has been to read more nonfiction. I definitely haven't done as well with that as I wanted to. Last night, I wad thinking about how I wanted to accomplish that goal, so I picked The Plot to Kill Hitler off of my bookshelf. I started and finished it in one sitting.

I never really know how to write reviews for nonfiction books because they are about events that actually happened. There are no characters or plot to judge, etc etc. That being said, I did think this book was informative. I knew absolutely nothing about Dietrich Bonhoeffer before reading this book. In fact, the only thing I really knew about World War II were the basics that were learned in high school, and a few things I picked up from reading historical fiction books about the subject over the years. I found Dietrich Bonhoeffer to be a very admirable person. Not only was he incredibly brave in a time where it was dangerous to do so, but he was very devout in his faith as well. No matter what hellish thing he was going through, he never lost his belief system, or wavered for a second. I only hope that I could be like that.

That being said, the way this book was written wasn't very interesting. It was almost like reading a simplified textbook. I understand that can happen with nonfiction sometimes, but it made it so most of the book didn't stick in my mind. It's the morning after reading this book when I'm writing the review, and I only remember the basic things that happened. I couldn't tell you anything in particular detail, other than the suitcase bombing, and that's because it was the biggest part of the book, in my opinion. I think if the author would have written the book in a way where it flowed like a story while still obviously being nonfiction, instead of just stating facts, I would have remembered more.

Even though The Plot to Kill Hitler wasn't that memorable, I did enjoy what I do remember reading. I found Dietrich Bonhoeffer to be an interesting person with a great morale compass. The book did make me want t do more research on him. I will probably find other books about him to read, and lesser known people like him that were heroes in their own way during World War II. I find the lesser known stories more interesting than the well known ones sometimes.  

I give The Plot to Kill Hitler: 3/5.

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I received this book from the publisher, via Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

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