Monday, June 25, 2007
The Kommandant’s Girl by Pam Jenoff
The time is WWII Prague. Emma is a shy, poor Jewish girl who meets an amazing and passionate young man, Jacob. Jacob sees her hidden away in the books of the library and they fall passionately in love. Then the war interfers with their new life.
Jacob joins the resistance and sends Emma to his Catholic aunt on the edges of Prague. Emma changes her name to Anna and begins working in Nazi headquarters for the Kommandant. So begins the next phase of Emma/Anna’s life. She is scared beyond all she knows that she will be discovered and killed. Here is a Jewish girl in the heart of Prague’s Nazi center.
But, Emma finds strength in a way she did not expect. She finds love in the Krysia’s house (the older aunt) caring for an orphaned child. She is able to slowly do more and more for the resistance as she discovers the Kommandan’ts secrets. But Anna has her secrets as well. As the Kommandant notices her again and again she must make very difficult choices that affect her life and the life of Jacob. Her choices will come to change her and the lives of many around her.
This is a great read - not easy, but thought provoking. It makes you wonder what choices you would make for the greater good...Sitting in the middle of Iowa the path looks clear - would it if the war swirled through our own world???