post written by Emma Filbrun
Title: Candy Bombers
Author: Robert Elmer
Series: The Wall Book 1
Major Themes: Berlin, Berlin Airlift, Germany
Synopsis: As he struggles for survival during the Berlin Airlift in 1948, Erich must eventually decide whether to hold on to hatred or to forgive.
Ever since I was in third grade and read the story of the Berlin Airlift in my Social Studies textbook, I have been quite intrigued by that little bit of history. Unfortunately, there isn’t much in print about it, and even the revised edition of my old third-grade textbook doesn’t have the story, so I couldn’t even share that with my children when we talked about it. Therefore, I was quite interested to read Candy Bombers when I found it on my mother’s bookshelf.
Erich and Katarina, teenage cousins, are struggling for survival—not only for themselves and their mothers, but also their grandmother—in Berlin in the spring of 1948. They find food where they can, and make do with the bombed-out houses all around them. The Soviet blockade of their city makes life even more of a struggle. One day, Erich has had enough. His grandmother needs food, and he is going to find some. He sneaks inside an American cargo plane at Templehof Airport—but there isn’t any food in it. What can he do now?
A few days later, both children sneak into a plane, and are horrified when it takes off with them aboard. What trouble have they found themselves in now? What will happen to them? Then, it turns out that one of the crew is a journalist looking for a human interest story about the Berlin Airlift, and this is his big break. Can Erich let down his guard and forget about his hatred of the Americans who bombed his city so that Fred can help them? And what about when Fred needs help later? Will they be able to escape the Russians who are angry with Fred?
This little-known bit of history is told as a fast-paced mystery. Children who enjoy mysteries and historical fiction will love it. One concern, however, that we noted is that the author obviously does not recognize the difference between the kingdom of this world and the Kingdom of Heaven. The American soldiers are portrayed as being Christians. According to Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, and Paul in Romans 13, Christians are not to resist evil in any physical way. Therefore, we do not believe it is right for Christians to be in the army.
Read Aloud—Ages 5 – 8, 8 – 12
Reading Independently—Ages 8 – 12
Links to buy Candy Bombers:
AbeBooks: View Choices on AbeBooks.com
Book Depository: Paperback
Keywords: Berlin, Berlin Airlift, Germany