Northeast Library Customer Wins a Chromebook
The winner is Estela Milan, age 13. Her award-winning essay can be read below.
A True Story of WWII
A Review of HHhH by Lauren Binet
By Estela Milan
Fascism. A word we all learn in history class, inseparable from its association with Hitler’s Third Reich. For those of us living in America, it has never seemed like a threat. Just a problem for other countries, not the United States, that symbol of democracy. This illusion of impenetrability is just that, an illusion. And a book that really opened my eyes to fascism’s power and its effects was HHhH by Laurent Binet. It is an account of fascist Germany’s intrusion into Czechoslovakia, and the daring mission of two Czechoslovakian parachutists to assassinate one of Hitler’s right hand men, Reinhard Heydrich, the “Hangman of Prague”.
This book shows you the brutality of the fascist leadership, while also being a thrilling adventure filled with spies, assassins, and chases. You can relate to the patriotism of the young men sent on the mission; they will defend their country’s freedom at all costs. They land in the wrong place, take refuge with a resister, and then attempt to assassinate Heydrich with only a bad gun (which jams at the worst moment) and a grenade. While showing you heroism, this book never lets you forget the capacity for cruelty in the occupying force. For instance, when they are searching for the assassins, they burn down the entire village of Lidice, shooting 184 men, and deporting 272 women and children to concentration camps. Binet’s frank writing style really makes you feel the atrocity of this story. So many innocent people killed because the Nazis wanted to vent their frustrations over the unsuccessful search for the parachutists is an idea so far from our lives that we can’t really feel the horror of it, but Binet forces you to realize what it was like. One thing this story proves is that what happens in reality is crazier than fiction.
Congratulations to Estela for an excellent book review!
We are so proud of you here at the Northeast Branch.
Keep reading and writing!