"[The Groundwork Guides] are excellent books, mandatory for school libraries and the increasing body of young people prepared to take ownership of the situations and problems previous generations have left them. " —Globe and Mail
Some view the systematic killing, rape and destruction of homes in Darfur as a grave humanitarian crisis. For others, it’s a clear example of the ultimate crime against humanity — genocide. Who is right? What is genocide? What is the impact on humanity of wiping out entire groups of people? Who are the endangered human beings in today’s world?
This thoughtful book helps young readers understand these and other difficult questions. Providing an overview of the history of genocide worldwide, the book explores the paradox that while a person who murders another person can be tried and even executed for the crime, a person who murders hundreds or thousands of people usually goes free. Using case studies the book points out their unique character while at the same time establishing important links between them. Most important, the book answers the question, what can be done to prevent genocide from happening in the future?


  • Commended, Maine State Library Cream of the Crop List 2007
  • Commended, Booklist Top 10 Youth Series - Nonfiction 2007
  • Commended, IRA Children's Book Award Notables 2007
  • Commended, CCBC Our Choice (Starred Selection) 2007
  • Short-listed, Norma Fleck Non-fiction Award 2007
  • Commended, NYPL Books for the Teenage List 2007


Each of the four well-written and engaging books in this valuable series provides a foundation for understanding an important subject relevant to current world stability and peace.

- Library Media Connection

...the book gives an impassioned overview of a timely topic.

- Horn Book

Though the topic is a dark one, Springer's passionate plea against the status quo lends her book an urgency and immediacy that pulls the reader equally through the dry legalism of United Nations statutes and the vivid horrors of genocides past and present. ..Highly Recommended.

- CM Magazine a lucid, informal text, Springer ably documents particular crimes against humanity. ..A fine resource for Holocaust and genocide curriculums, and as a discussion starter for the topic of human rights.

- Booklist

...engaging and thought-provoking. excellent primer for anyone interested in international human rights and the fate of humankind itself.

- Halifax Chronicle-Herald

...concise and well-written. ..

- Curriculum Connections (SLJ)

Readers will come away from the book wanting to do better, and be better, than the people who went before them who allowed such crimes to happen. ..

- Globe and Mail

The authors express strong viewpoints that are sure to jolt readers into ready agreement or opposition. ..These concise, straightforward titles are important additions to all collections.

- School Library Journal