World War II is raging in Europe, but Milada feels pretty safe with her family in their small village in Czechoslovakia. She’s the fastest runner in her class, an avid stargazer, and best friends with Terezie.
Then in June 1942, Nazi soldiers pound on the door in the middle of the night. They take her father and older brother in one direction. They herd Milada and her mother, grandmother, and little sister in another. The entire village is being arrested. All the women and children are marched to the school, loaded into trucks, taken to a nearby town, and locked in an old gymnasium. No one knows what happened to the men and boys.
After three long days, the soldiers say it is time to go. Milada thinks the nightmare is over. She’ll see her father and brother again, she’ll get to sleep in her own bed. But then a soldier tears her from her mother. She and one other girl from her class are put on a different bus. They drive for hours—out of Czechoslovakia and into Poland. They’re taken to a center where they’re joined by a dozen Polish girls.
Milada and the other girls have two things in common: the blond hair and light colored eyes prized by the Nazis. They are all given new names, taught the German language, and trained in the Nazi philosophy so they can be adopted by German families. Milada becomes Eva, a good German girl by day, but at night she’s left trying to hold on to who she really is and where she really came from.
Genre: historical fiction