Holo­caust Camps and Killing Centers

Craig E. Blohm
  • Review
By – March 25, 2017

This is a rather pre­cise sum­ming up in sev­en slen­der vol­umes of a dire top­ic, the Holo­caust, one that has dom­i­nat­ed non-fic­tion lit­er­a­ture for pre-teen and YA read­ers for almost half a cen­tu­ry. Assum­ing that the read­er will be most engaged in read­ing at the point where chil­dren enter this trag­ic sto­ry, that is where the author begins book 1, Chil­dren of the Holo­caust, when she describes in a brief space what hap­pened to chil­dren in that peri­od of his­to­ry and why. Once the read­er is hooked, book 2, Hitler’s Final Solu­tion, becomes even more spe­cif­ic, cov­er­ing the whole range of their impris­on­ment, when most per­ish and only if they are lucky, will they gain their ulti­mate lib­er­ty. Book 3, Holo­caust Camps and Killing Cen­ters, is the most dire. Things look much bet­ter in book 4, Holo­caust Res­cue and Lib­er­a­tion, and even bet­ter in book 5, Holo­caust Resis­tance. Book 6, Holo­caust Sur­vivors, is, in its way, the most poignant. In it, peo­ple try to pick up the rem­nants of their lives, thank those who helped to save them, but live in a state of shock for­ev­er. One sur­vivor put it that they had to learn how to become human again.” The final vol­ume in the series is Nazi War Crim­i­nals, with its dif­fi­cult sub­ject mat­ter. Each book is a slen­der 80 pages and is gen­er­ous with its pho­to­graph­ic repro­duc­tions and also con­tains: source notes, names of impor­tant peo­ple, books for fur­ther research and an index. This is a high­ly rec­om­mend­ed and use­ful set. It is intel­li­gent­ly writ­ten, well-orga­nized, and is also respect­ful of the student’s intel­lect. It is both a good sur­vey and serves also as a guide and intro­duc­tion to this piv­otal point in the world’s and the Jew’s his­to­ry and travails. 

Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 11 – 16.

Addi­tion­al Books Fea­tured in Review

These sev­en vol­umes are a part of Ref­er­ence Point Press’s Under­stand­ing the Holo­caust” series

Mar­cia W. Pos­ner, Ph.D., of the Holo­caust Memo­r­i­al and Tol­er­ance Cen­ter of Nas­sau Coun­ty, is the library and pro­gram direc­tor. An author and play­wright her­self, she loves review­ing for JBW and read­ing all the oth­er reviews and arti­cles in this mar­velous periodical.

Discussion Questions