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Facing the Lion: Memoirs of a Young Girl in Nazi Europe
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Facing the Lion: Memoirs of a Young Girl in Nazi Europe

4.57  ·  Rating Details ·  664 Ratings  ·  71 Reviews
Simone Arnold is an ordinary French schoolgirl: spirited and stubborn. Then the Nazis march in, demanding complete conformity. Friends become enemies, teachers spout Nazi propaganda, and school officials recruit for the Hitler Youth. Simone's family refuses to hail Hitler as Germany's savior. They are Jehovah's Witnesses, and they reject Nazi racism and violence. The Nazi ...more
Hardcover, 418 pages
Published April 1st 2000 by Grammaton Press LLC
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Oct 04, 2011 Kassandra rated it it was amazing
I loved this book so much. To see a person that young with such faith is amzing.
I look up to her, and reading about her and her strength to stand up for what she believes in is AWSOME!!!!!!!! Being one of Jehovah's Witnesses I understand what it's like to go through persecution, granted it's not that extreme, but when you read about something like this, you as a person really appriciate and look up to those who have been one for along time and have that faith until the day they die. The way Sim
Facing The Lion: Memoirs of a Young Girl in Nazi Europe is an autobiography written in the voice of a young girl, Simone Arnold. Growing up in Alsace (a location on the French/German border), Simone is an astute and happy child surrounded by a close-knit and loving family. In time, her parents become Jehovah’s Witnesses and Simone too makes the personal decision to embrace the faith with a fiery zeal and enduring fervor beyond her years, that would make any parent swell with pride. However, WWII ...more
Paloma Maldonado
This book told the story of a young girl who was a Jehovah Witness. It tells you that the Jewish people weren't the only ones who suffered during WWII. After having her childhood taken from her Simone(Maria) was sent to live in a home for "dilinquent" children. Simone(Maria) wasn't a diliquent though, she just stood strong and wouldn't betray her values. Even after four years of gruesome hard labor and back breaking tasks she wouldn't bend. This book taught me that if stand strong for what you b ...more
Apr 09, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
"I remembered that is was a privilege to stand as a Witness of Jehovah."
Like many people that have read this book - that one sentence blew me away.
As one of Jehovah's Witnesses I started reading this book at first as nothing more than an interest in our history. However, it wasn't long before I realised that no matter what (if any) faith you are of, this girls courage and faith is nothing short of inspiring. To be such a young age and to survive being ripped from the love of your family, be told
Autobiography of a sister... so far it's a great read and really encouraging!
Miriam Pereira
Nov 08, 2011 Miriam Pereira rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book Facing The Lion by Simone Arnold Liebster was one of my favorite books. I’ve read book about the holocaust but there most about Jews, but this one shows how it wasn’t just Jews that were targeted. It was a great auto- biography of who a girl stud up for what she believed in even thought it would of cost her own life.

Simone made you feel what she was feeling and kind of feel what she was going through. We may never go through such things but she makes you feel all the pain she went th
Dec 26, 2010 Nicole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An often overlooked fact, Jehovah's Witnesses suffered great persecution at the hands of the Nazis due to their firm stand against Hitler. This book tells the poignant experiences of a young Jehovah's Witness who stayed true to her faith through many trials and hardships. I highly recommend it to persons of all faiths, but especially so to Jehovah's Witnesses as it is an encouraging and faith strengthening read.
Brandon Briscoe
Jul 11, 2013 Brandon Briscoe rated it it was amazing
This book has inspired me ro strengthen my resolve to serve Jehovah more fully. If this young girl can do it amid the Nazi Lion, then I can do it.
Michele Vaca
Jan 18, 2013 Michele Vaca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We were able to Skype the author who is a Holoaust survivor, amazing story!
Christopher J.
Nov 04, 2012 Christopher J. rated it it was amazing
This book was one of the few books that I would say "touched" me. The emotion with which Liebster conveys her experiences coupled with the control she has over the story makes for a true masterpiece. Liebster's memoir may not be the most traumatic of Holocaust survivor stories. Yet it is one of the most compelling. Torn from the arms of her mother and father, both of whom are shipped to concentration camps, Liebster is forced to attend a reform school to remove her dangerous religious conviction ...more
This book is not the best book I've ever read, but I found it to be uplifting still. 'Facing the Lion' is the real life story of Simone Arnold, a young Jehovah's Witness, as she faces terror and discrimination under the Nazi Regime in WWII. Arnold's story lets us know of the suffering that went on outside of the camps, and what other Nazi banned groups had to go through to survive. I found little Simone to be brave and an intelligent young girl. Her determination to succeed is what kept the book ...more
Evelyn Foss
Oct 15, 2015 Evelyn Foss rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Asha Greye
Oct 15, 2016 Asha Greye rated it it was amazing
When I first picked up this book, during my very first semester of university, I had not yet made contact with Jehovah's Witnesses and adopted the beliefs as my own. No rather I read this is as a sheltered globally illiterate American high school graduate, who did not know that others besides Jews suffered during the Holocaust. I was enthralled from the beginning to the end by the vivid descriptions of life in pre-war Alsace-Lorrain, a region in the crossroads of both France and Germany, her par ...more
Jan 08, 2015 Maureen rated it really liked it
After recently reading about the people in Concentration Camps with the "pink triangle" labels I was curious about other minority groups persucuted and sent to Concentration camps under the Nazi regime. This book is about the 'purple triangle' people..Jehovah's Witnesses. Specifically, this is the autobiography of Simone who is 11 and taken away from her parents and put into a 'reform' school where she is severly abused. She could have avoided going there in the first place if she had said 'heil ...more
Sarah Thoeny
Jan 04, 2014 Sarah Thoeny rated it it was amazing
Amazing life story, so faith strengthening! I highly recommend for anyone, young or old.
Aug 14, 2007 Dawn rated it it was amazing
Very good book about a young Jehovah's Witness who was persecuted during WWII. I also want to read her husbands memoir. She married a Jew who also survived though he was put into the concentration camps.
Jan 22, 2014 Megan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am one of Jehovah's Witnesses and Simone, the author and main character of this book, is one of my heroines! She is an outstanding example of faith and deserves to be imitated by all us JWs!
Mar 02, 2014 Sofie rated it really liked it
A well-written, inspirational story which takes you through the second world war from a completely new(at least to me) perspective.
Tamara Stephens
Dec 30, 2010 Tamara Stephens rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
no matter how old you are- you can have strong faith- faith that can get you through anything...
Sep 23, 2015 Ashley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A heart wrenching story about a girl at the age of eight in Nazi Germany, forced into a refinement school until the age of fourteen. I really enjoyed and took in the moral of this story, to stand up for what you believe in no matter how humiliating. Simone, the main character, goes through so much just because of her religion, and, I could definitely sympathize for her. The authorś writing style was outstanding, I felt as if I were talking with Simone, listening to all the stories she had to tel ...more
Tenicia Sobers
Jul 30, 2014 Tenicia Sobers rated it it was amazing
As one of Jehovah's Witnesses, this book was so encouraging to read.
Jan 30, 2012 Jeanette rated it really liked it
I agree, every JW should read. Such courage. An example to follow!
Nov 27, 2013 Lara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful and courageous story!
Dec 01, 2014 Morgan rated it it was amazing
If there ever was such a thing as an excellent book (which there totally is) it's this book. Powerful. Amazing. Incredible. Did I say powerful? Beautiful read. I wish I could have the courage she had, to be able to face the lion and not be afraid. Everyone should read this, even if you aren't a JW. It teaches how to overcome bullying, how to be your own person, how to survive even the worst situations and above all, how to trust in God even when you think you can't trust anyone anymore.
Nov 24, 2013 Dawn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, history
Simone Arnold endured a childhood deranged by Nazi terror in 1940's Europe. Her experiences are difficult to read because they expose this world's shocking capacity for wickedness. Yet, Simone heroically maintained her integrity in the face of brutal war-time tyranny.

As a child of only 11-14 years, Simone was expelled from school, torn from her parents, and enslaved in a Nazi "rehabilitation" institution. Time and again she was taunted and abused for her religious convictions as a Bible Student
May 06, 2010 Dayna rated it it was amazing
The Courage this young girl showed in times of trial is an example to be in awe off.
Raised as one of Jehovah's Witnesses she is thrust into the adult world of war.
Simone is removed from her family home and taken to a Girls home, speaking to others is not permitted, orders are followed, bathing is once a year. Simone s faith is tested to the limits for a 12 year old girl, yet her courage and determination get her through without her beloved family.
Such is the story of many young ones through this
Aug 10, 2015 natalia rated it it was amazing
Such bravery in this book, reminds me to remember who I am, and even if theirs struggles in life i cant fix, or cant change, i have to be faithful, believe, and hope in all things.
May 27, 2016 Rachel rated it it was ok
This book, while the content was highly important and interesting, was not my favorite. The actual story was very inspiring, but the writing style was not my favorite.
Morgan Sontag
Jun 11, 2014 Morgan Sontag rated it it was amazing
My friend Ellen let me borrow this. I read it in 3 days. I was astounded by it. It was beautiful & amazing. I felt so bad for her but I knew Jah was on her side. He's on all of our sides, we just have to start being on his.

Also, I thought it interesting because my grandfather was in the same camp as her during WWII but as an American Soldier. So maybe he saw her? I don't know but it would've been neat if he did.
Jan 28, 2016 Judy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: holocaust, memoir
I didn't like this as well as most memoirs of the Holocaust because of the religious content. Author seemed to be trying to convert others.
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