Book Review: Underground Scouts by Marie Sontag


For me, the two most important elements that make a historical fiction book a good one are historical accuracy and communicating the hope of Jesus. And Underground Scouts by Marie Sontag does just that. 

   Set in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II, this young adult historical fiction novel tells the story of a group of Boy Scouts and Girl Guides who were willing to give up everything to fight for a free Poland. 

   This book is extremely well-researched, weaving numerous real people and events seamlessly in with fictional ones. And there’s a section in the back of the book that tells which characters are real and which are fictional. 

   A word of warning: my mother read this book aloud to a wide range of ages, and there were some parts she skipped over–some violence and some romance. And a lot of characters die. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever read a book in which so many named characters die! It’s realistic, though, considering the setting. And there’s hope. Some of the characters die with the words “Don’t lose hope,” on their lips. If I could sum up the theme of this book in one sentence, that’s what it would be: “Don’t lose hope.” 

Don’t lose hope when evil seems to win. 

   Don’t lose hope when your family and friends are killed. 

   Don’t lose hope when you feel abandoned.

   Don’t lose hope when your freedom is taken away. 

   God is still good no matter what. And one day, we will have a free country again. 

   Don’t lose hope. 

   The main characters are Catholic, as most people in Poland were, but the spiritual lessons in the book are ones that I think Christians of all denominations would agree on. This book sparked some great conversations amongst my family, and while there were some things I would have done differently were I writing it, I’d still give it 5 stars for being a historically accurate and hopeful World War II story. 

Find Underground Scouts on Amazon here

On Goodreads here

And Marie Sontag’s author website here.


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