Thursday, March 7, 2013

My Own Revolution

Communism in Eastern Europe ended only a few decades ago. I grew up hearing about the social injustices behind the Iron Curtain, but many members of the younger generation have no idea what a Marxist dictatorship was like. With poignancy and suspense, Carolyn Marsden tells of life under a totalitarian government as seen through the eyes of a young Czech boy.

It is the 1960s in Eastern Europe, where American rock music is strictly forbidden as the regime works to indoctrinate the people with Marxist-Leninist philosophy. Patrik, age fourteen, decides to revolt against the Communist dictatorship through a series of pranks which he describes as his “own revolution.” Too late, he realizes the danger he has created for his family, who are already suspect for not being Communist Party members. In the meantime, Patrik realizes that his childhood sweetheart is keeping company with another boy, adding to his growing feelings of frustration and isolation. As the noose begins to tighten around Patrik and his family, he sees clearly that the things he values most in life are worth making sacrifices for. Marsden brings her characters to life, and I found it easy to identify with the boy and his family as their world begins to fall apart, and they no longer know who is a friend and who is an enemy. My Own Revolution is a page-turner full of heroism, adventure and pathos behind the Iron Curtain.

(*NOTE: This book was sent to me by the Historical Novel Society in exchange for my honest opinion.)


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