Wednesday, March 29, 2017

"Making Bombs for Hitler"

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch is the acclaimed author of over sixteen picture books and novels. Her earlier picture books include Enough, Silver Threads, Daughter of War, Aram's Choice and The Best Gifts. She won the Silver Birch Fiction Award for Making Bombs for Hitler and the Red Cedar Award for Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan's Rescue from War.

Skrypuch applied the Page 69 Test to Making Bombs for Hitler and reported the following:
In this novel, ten year old Lida has been captured by the Nazis and is sent to a brutal slave camp where she is subsists on sawdust bread and watery turnip soup. The inmates are forced to do various kinds of labor for the German war machine. Some of the captives are sent by train to work in private factories and munitions plants, but a few, including Lida, have jobs right in the camp. Lida is allowed to do mending in the officers' laundry after demonstrating her talent with a needle and thread. Her friend and fellow captive Juli also has a job in the compound. She does something at the hospital.

At lunch, Lida notices a smudge of blood on Juli's cuff.

Page 69 in Making Bombs for Hitler begins with:

I wanted to ask her about the blood on her cuff, but sensed this wasn't the time.

The train that brings the slave laborers back from the munitions plant is strangely late and so for a brief time, Juli and Lida are in the wash house all by themselves.

This is a culminating moment in the novel. Lida is just about to learn the terrible nature of Juli's job, and they're also about to find out why the train is so late. And – how that event makes staying alive much more complicated for Lida.
Visit Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch's website.

My Book, The Movie: Making Bombs for Hitler.

Writers Read: Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch.

--Marshal Zeringue