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Reviewed by Tiffany Ferrell for Readers' Favorite
Imagine being judged and persecuted for something you couldn’t help; an illness that came suddenly and took away your ability to get around like everyone else. In Risking Exposure, fourteen-year-old Sophie is an avid photographer and member of the Hitler Youth. Like her father, she wants to photograph the truth in what she sees but lacks courage. Some of the activities the children are involved in make Sophie uncomfortable but she keeps this to herself. Right after her father leaves for the front as a war photographer, the unthinkable happens to the happy and talented fourteen-year-old. Nearly dying from polio, her whole world is flipped upside down. Now the once physically active child is lucky to be able to use any of her limbs. Having to learn to do everything again, Sophie sees just what the country controlled by Nazis is like; sees how they look at those people like herself. Deciding to take her father's advice, she tries to get strong enough so she can take photos again and capture the truth, exposing the lies which the Reich has been feeding to the outside world. At what cost will the truth be for Sophie though?
I thought Risking Exposure was a very unique and well-written novel. I don’t think I’ve read another book specifically about the Reich’s persecution of the mentally and physically disabled before this one. So much hate and intolerance happened in the Nazi regime during this time that, aside from the very many Jewish people that were killed, they were targeting anyone that they considered weak and un-Aryan. Sadly enough, this could even be their own children if they were born with anything they considered not fit. Even a sickness like polio could turn your country against you. Jeanne Moran brings those facts overlooked into the light with this book. I really liked the characters, especially Sophie and her father. Risking Exposure gives you a more in-depth insight that not everyone in Germany was comfortable with what Hitler was doing. Risking Exposure is a book I’ll definitely recommend to my historical fiction reader friends.