A vivid, informative story that will pull at your heartstrings is what The Children’s Train (Escape on the Kindertransport) is all about. Hitler’s reign has begun in Germany and all of the Jewish people are his targets. England has agreed to try to save the children. Parents with broken hearts put their children aboard the train headed over the border and to new homes and families, while they remain to face the horrors of being Jews.
We closely follow the paths of several of the children - Peter, his sister Becca, Hans, Stephen, and Eva. It is a long and scary time of separation, not knowing if your family has made it alive or has fallen under Hitler’s punishment. Peter becomes the hero of the story as he returns to Germany and joins the Resistance in an effort to save his family, his friends, and his country. He quickly learns how to kill the enemy, set bombs off, and help to blow up a concentration camp. Becca and Eva are the two things that inspire him to keep up the fight until victory is won and Hitler’s days are ended.
I really enjoyed The Children’s Train, but it was hard to read because while it was fiction, the facts were very real and very painful. I was on the edge of my seat each time a Nazi soldier appeared and was amazed at the bravery of both the children and adults dealing with each horrifying incident. Jana Zinser has certainly written a book that deserves high acclaim and honor. I believe that The Children’s Train is a must-read account of the kindertransport and of the many young lives that were saved. A great historical fictional story that should not be missed.
Reviewed by Trudi LoPreto for Readers' Favorite