Statement from Scholastic on "Making Bombs for Hitler"
Canadian edition of Making Bombs for Hitler will be offered in place of US edition, responding to concerns about US edition cover.
In 2012 Scholastic Canada published a historical novel entitled Making Bombs for Hitler. This title won or was shortlisted for numerous Canadian awards including the Silver Birch Award (2013). It is the story of Lida, a young Ukrainian girl who is captured by the Nazis and forced into slave labor camp where she made weapons. A review in 2014 of this edition by the Association of Jewish Libraries Review noted that “The details of camp life and the hardships endured by the prisoners give readers another glimpse into the horrendous experiences of victims during the Holocaust.”
Early in 2017, Scholastic released a US edition of this book, which has also been favorably reviewed by, among others, Publishers Weekly and Kirkus, who called it “A well-told story of persistence, lost innocence, survival, and hope.” As a work of historical fiction, this story takes place during World War II in German slave labor camps. More than 120 reviews on Goodreads praise the title, citing the brave resistance of individuals against the Nazi regime.
The US edition of Making Bombs for Hitler was made available in February through retail outlets and libraries in hardcover, and in paperback through Scholastic’s school book clubs and book fairs, and includes a Nazi swastika as part of its cover design. Several librarians, book club teachers, and schools sponsoring book fairs have expressed deep concern about the swastika on the cover, stating that in today’s climate the swastika symbol may promote hatred including anti-Semitism. Others have noted that the title Making Bombs for Hitler, in connection with the swastika symbol on the cover, could also be misinterpreted as encouraging hatred and destructive behavior. In each of these cases, any statements of concern related only to the cover design and not to the contents of the book. Accordingly, we are replacing the US edition with the original Canadian edition, which has a different cover without the swastika symbol. Except for the covers, the editions are identical.
The Canadian edition of Making Bombs for Hitler with the Canadian cover will be made available in the US in mid-April.