Secrets in the Shadows is the account of best friends Michael and Wolfie who are boys growing up in Nazi Germany. Both of them are delighted to join the Hitler Youth. But by the time the boys are twelve, a devastating event turns their world upside down. On a school trip to Berlin, the boys see a beautiful Jewish girl boarding the train with her mother. Shortly after, a horrified Michael witnesses their brutal murder - the result of ant-Semitism. As a result, Michael's loyalty to Hitler begins to show cracks. In 1943 when Michael turns sixteen, his father orders him to volunteer with the 12th SS Hitler Youth Panzer unit. Wolfie joins as well. Boehm shows them on the grim battlefields fighting hand-to-hand in the villages and towns, sometimes against the Canadians. Seeing what is happening on the battlefield, they come to reject the Nazi regime and its propaganda. In the final showdown, Michael and Wolfie are ordered to travel to Berlin, and it is there they confront the secrets that lie in the shadows of the past.
About the author
Heige S. Boehm's writing is greatly influenced by the stories and lives of her parents who grew up in Nazi Germany, and at the end of the war found themselves in East Germany, locked behind the Iron Curtain. They escaped with their first two children to West Berlin in 1961, just days before the wall was built. After living in several refugee camps, they settled for a few years in Euskirchen where Heige was born in 1964. In 1974 she and her family immigrated to Canada. Always interested in exploring WWII history, Heige researched the subject while obtaining her Creative Writing Certificate from Simon Fraser University. She now lives on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia, not far from Vancouver, where she is writing and researching her next novel, a sequel to Secrets in the Shadows. Visit www.heigeboehm.ca.