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Through Innocent Eyes: The Chosen Girls of the Hitler Youth Hardcover – November 21, 2012

3.8 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Cynthia A. Sandor was born in New York and raised in Greenwich, Connecticut. She was employed with Cherry Lane Music Publishing Co., Inc. as the Manager of Copyrights, Administration, and Licensing. She studied at St. Petersburg College and received her bachelor's degree in business from Eckerd College. She survived a horrific motorcycle accident, which propelled her to produce the Lady Rider Show, The Business Forum, and Travels with Cindy, on Pinellas County Public Access Television. She is an accomplished world traveler visiting over twenty countries. She has written for Guitar for the Practicing Musician, Biker Ally magazine, and the Tampa Bay New Times magazine. An article about her parents' journey appears in the 50th Anniversary Maiden Voyage Edition – S.S. United States – Fastest Ship in the World by Frank Braynard and Robert Hudson Westover. Ms. Sandor lives with her two Chihuahuas, Nicky, and Harley, in Oldsmar, Florida.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 436 pages
  • Publisher: Balboa Press (November 21, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1452563101
  • ISBN-13: 978-1452563107
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,737,520 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sharon M. Bressen VINE VOICE on January 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
At a local Florida library at an Author’s Showcase gathering, I meet the author, Cynthia Sandor, and offered to read her book about her mother Gertrude Kerschner for the next meeting in 2014.

For the past two years, the book publishing industry has issued numerous novels about World War II subjects. This would be my first narrative about the training of Hitler Youth, in particular the Bund Deutscher Madel (BDM), the League of German Girls.

The German Youth Movement started in 1896 as a cultural and educational movement and by the 1930’s; nine hundred local groups in Germany were given the formal title of the Bund Deutscher Madel (BDM), the League of German Girls in the Hitler Youth.
When the author’s mother was dying from cancer, she found her mother’s handwritten diary and began this story about training her mother received in Austria beginning in 1938 when she was an impoverished 10 year old girl.

It was mandatory that Gertrude join The Young Girls’ League where she faced paramilitary like disciplinary measures and uniforms to develop her loyalty, character, and dedication; all in the effort to becoming a future pure blood German mother and carry on the noble German Race.

By athletic competition, vocalizing, hiking, working on farms, performing parade marches, and neo-pagan rituals, these young girls learn to follow orders and want to be outstanding citizens. Gertrude moves through the various groups and by 1941 is chosen to participate in Landjahr Lager in Seidorf, Niederschlesien, Germany.

After Landjahr, Gertrude returned home to discover her two older brothers were serving at the Russian front and her younger brother was in Hitler Youth. Together with her sister and a friend, she travels to Mariazell, Austria to work as a waitress.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Great story from a view we don't often hear. Does seem as though in the rush to destroy political fascism, some really quality community programs, especially organized help for farms were thrown to the dogs as well. Not everything was bad under fascism... not everything is good under corporate democracy.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a must read for everyone! It is not only historic, but filled with a memorable story of youth and growing up as The Chosen Girls of the Hitler Youth... It is fascinating as told by the writer ...telling her beloved moms story...I couldn't get enough! Loved it so much I bought 3 for friends and family! It's a must read! I promise you will really enjoy this amazing historic book!
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Format: Paperback
It took me a while to read because of all of the information that I had to take in as I went on the journey with these young girls as they learned a whole new way of life . it was an exciting journey for them and me as I felt like I was right there watching and listening as they went through all of their steps of becoming young functional women in their society. There is a lot of info given as the story goes through it time line but it is needed to really understand the times that she lived in ..
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Interesting perspective from a young girl growing up under the NAZI regime and forced to "go along" with the new government's laws. I think the author spent too much time talking about her friends and chores.
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Format: Hardcover
I am an avid reader and the only other author that I can compare with Sandor's very detailed and precise descriptions is Tom Clancy. The research she obviously has done is also comparable to Mr. Clancy. I felt intimately part of the story by feeling the emotions of the characters.
This is not a novel but rather a true history of an ugly time in our world. May it never be repeated.
C. A. Sandor's candid story should help.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I may be somewhat partial in my review since my Grandmother, Hedwig "Heidi" Kraushofer McLeod, was a very good friend to Gertrude. However, I believe that Cynthia has done a fantastic job of telling this story that so many of us just wonder about in our life. Those of us that have grown up with mothers or grandmothers who were Austrian immigrants have heard them tell us so many wonderful stories of life growing up in the beautiful Austrian countryside; but, they tended to shy away from getting into too much detail about the Hitler Youth as it was required during their time. I am very greatful to Cynthia for writing this book and shedding light on the truth about what they endured. Thank you does not seem to be enough! I encourage everyone with any interest in this time period to enjoy this book!
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Format: Hardcover
I can’t forget the events leading to World War II and the deadly and unforgettable Holocaust. I was not, however, familiar with how Hitler poisoned the minds and spirit of the German youth. The author did a tremendous job in telling her beloved mothers journey, growing up, as one of the chosen girls of the Hitler youth. She explains in detail the many aspects of the indoctrination of these young children and how a whole generation of girls and boys were lead into following Hitler’s dreams.

Shelley B.
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