Book Review: We Had To Be Brave by Deborah Hopkinson

“…for Kindertransport to work, concerned, loving parents had to make the heart-wrenching decision to part with their children and send them alone to a foreign country to be cared for by strangers, including those who might not share their own religious beliefs or traditions.”

Deborah Hopkinson, We Had To Be Brave

Title: We Had To Be Brave: Escaping the Nazis on the Kindertransport
Author: Deborah Hopkinson
Genres: Non-fiction, History, Middle Grade
Length: 5 hrs, 13 mins
Published: February 4th, 2020

My Rating: ★★★★★
Read: 6/12/2022


Lots of information here even though it’s geared toward a teen/younger audience. Great pictures, too, though I’ve yet to look through them all because I listened to the book on audio (I typically borrow the digital version from the library as well for highlights, otherwise I wouldn’t have realized). The book primarily focuses on a few individuals who took part in the Kinderstransport. Naturally, there is also a brief history of the rise of Hitler and the antisemitism of the Nazis that led to the mass evacuation of Jewish children. It’s so sad to think about, but as the book emphasizes, it’s important to keep these atrocious stories alive for future generations in hopes to prevent a repeat. 


Since I was a kid myself, I could never wrap my mind around the idea of being sent away to live with strangers all by myself. Add war and prejudice into the mix and I know I wouldn’t have been able to get through it. Alas, this early intervention did manage to save a number of children’s lives. If only all of the families could have stayed together…

Where to buy the book:

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