At the age of fifteen Hortense Daman embarked on a secret career. In her German-occupied hometown of Louvain, Belgium, she joined the resistance, first as a courier, then as a fighter. She ran terrifying risks, smuggling explosives in her bicycle pannier past German soldiers and helping allied airmen to safety. It couldn't last; and it didn't. She was later betrayed, imprisoned and condemned to death. Separated from her family, she - and later her mother - was sent to the 'women's inferno' - Ravensbruck concentration camp. Subjected to horrific medical experiments, she endured starvation, illness, freezing temperatures, and she watched helplessly as thousands died around her. Yet, against unimaginable odds, she survived. Child at War is the true, extraordinary and often shocking account of the years that saw Hortense change from the innocent schoolgirl to freedom fighter and ultimately to survivor of the most atrocious regime the world has ever seen.
Mark Bles is well qualified to write about war and insurgency. Educated at Sandhurst and Oxford, he has served in the Royal Green Jackets and 22 Special Air Service Regiment. After leaving the regular army, he worked for several years as a kidnap negotiator. He has written two novels and several works of non-fiction including the acclaimed CHILD AT WAR: The True Story of Hortense Daman.