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Abridged Edition

…“Whoever does not bend will break!”

Twelve-year-old Simone hears this threat again and again from the Nazis—the savage Lion that is tearing apart her world. Simone will not bend. Can she be broken?

Simone Arnold is an ordinary ten-year-old schoolgirl—spirited and stubborn, a serious student and a budding artist. Her world is her loving parents, her art and music lessons, her grandparents' farm, and her little dog Zita. Then everything changes overnight. The Nazis march into her town and demand conformity—or else!

Simone's school becomes a battleground. Former friends become enemies. Teachers spout Nazi propaganda. School officials recruit members for the Hitler Youth. The Arnold family refuses to follow Hitler as Germany 's savior. They are Jehovah's Witnesses, and they reject Nazi racism and violence. The Nazi Lion makes them pay the price.

Simone is taunted by former friends and threatened by teachers. In time, her father and mother are sent to concentration camps, and twelve-year-old Simone is put into a Nazi educational home, where she will do hard labor.

Alone now in the Lion's den, Simone must fight to keep her spirit alive. Will Simone bend to the pressure, or will she stay true to her belief in what is right?

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