German Boy: A Child in War

Front Cover
Broadway Books, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 424 pages
81 Reviews
“I think German Boy has all the qualities of greatness. I love the book.” -- from the Foreword by Stephen Ambrose

As the Third Reich crumbled in 1945, scores of Germans scrambled to flee the advancing Russian troops. Among them was a little boy named Wolfgang Samuel, who left his home with his mother and sister and ended up in war-torn Strasbourg before being forced farther west into a disease-ridden refugee camp. German Boy is the vivid, true story of their fight for survival as the tables of power turned and, for reasons Wolfgang was too young to understand, his broken family suffered arbitrary arrest, rape, hunger, and constant fear.

Because his father was off fighting the war as a Luftwaffe officer, young Wolfgang was forced to become the head of his household, scavenging for provisions and scraps with which to feed his family. Despite his best efforts, his mother still found herself forced to do the unthinkable to survive, and her sacrifices became Wolfgang’s worst nightmares. Somehow, with the resilience only children can muster, he maintained his youth and innocence in little ways–making friends with other young refugees, playing games with shrapnel, delighting in the planes flown by the Americans and the candies the GIs brought. In the end, the Samuels begin life anew in America, and Wolfgang eventually goes on to a thirty-year career in the U.S. Air Force.

Bringing fresh insight to the dark history of Nazi Germany and the horror left in its wake, German Boy records the valuable recollections of an innocent’s incredible journey.

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Review: German Boy: A Child in War

User Review  - Ilmar Kanbergs - Goodreads

I have not yet read this novel, but seeing the books description and after reading the first few pages provoked an interest in the book. I have a historical interest in Europe after the end of the ... Read full review

Review: German Boy: A Child in War

User Review  - Sarah Armour - Goodreads

Excellent book! I stumbled across this book when I met the author at the Dulles Air and Space Museum. He was rather engaging and my son (who was 8 at the time) was engrossed by his story. I couldn't ... Read full review


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About the author (2001)

Wolfgang W. E. Samuel was commissioned through the Air Force ROTC at the University of Colorado and is a graduate of the National War College. He served in the U.S. Air Force for thirty years until his retirement in 1985 as a colonel. His writing has been published in several military journals, including Parameters, the U.S. Army War College quarterly. He lives in Fairfax, Virginia.

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