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Shattered Lives

Coming Soon

October update: The book is written and I am 80% through the editing process. There is still a long ways to go, but I am hoping to publish around the end of this year. See the book description below.

While Shattered Lives is a work of historical fiction, Treblinka, the largest Nazi death camp, is not. The extermination camp was critically important to Hitler’s “Final Solution to the Jewish Question.” Of the one million men, women, and children taken there, ninety-seven percent died in the gas chambers within three hours of arrival.

In August 1942, the Germans enter Wiejca, a small village in Poland, and rip fourteen-year-old Jakub Balinski and his father from their home. At Treblinka, Jakub's father becomes a forced laborer breaking rock into gravel. Even though the Germans give Jakub a uniform and call him a guard, within days, he learns he is nothing more than the commandant’s Polish slave boy. 

At first, he refuses to cooperate, and is punished for his disobedience. Then, he becomes entertainment, a sport for the German officers and Ukraine guards to bet on when he will comply with the commandant’s wishes. One tragedy after another molds him into someone he does not want to be. Is survival worth the price he has to pay for it?  

The daily atrocities shred Jakub of his innocence and expose him to a level of hatred he could never imagine. He can either turn a blind eye and live, or fight back and most likely die. His choices often go against everything he knows is right. Yet, if he ever is to return home, he must find a way to live with himself while helping others to stay alive.

Shattered Lives is a story of survival. It is also a story of an adolescent’s determination to keep his promises. Whatever he does, he knows he will have to live with the consequences the rest of his life.