Another excellent read!!! Yippee...things are looking up!
This is the July book for our book club. It's the story of Sarah a 10-year-old French girl captured on an awful night in July of 1942, a truly horrible moment of French history. A moment that has been forgotten by many and that is why De Rosnay chose to tell this story!
On that night, the French police brought together thousands of Jewish families and eventually deported them to Auschwitz concentration camp. But it was not a straight deportation...instead the men were sent first, then the women and then...they didn't know what to do with the thousands of children...
De Rosnay tells this story through twin lenses. One is Sarah - the girl wakened from her bed that awful night and taken away. The other is Julia, an American journalist who has lived in France for 20+ years with her husband and daughter. Julia is assigned to write an article about the 60 year commemoration of that awful night. Through her research she discovers a connection between her husband's family and Sarah. You really care about the two characters! Sarah with a secret that drives her and tears her up and Julia caught on a path that wasn't at all what she expected.
Although the story is somewhat predictable, it doesn't keep you from rushing through the book. This is a story of layers of secrets spanning families, decades and oceans. The weight of those secrets is evident in their lives and attitudes. For some that weight is made heavier by the indifference of an entire population.
This book made me wonder at our ability to not care, our ability to turn a blind eye and choose to forget the unpleasant, and the darkness that forgetting invites into your life. It also made me wonder about how the ordinary and simple acts of people who care can have such a profound impact on those caught in tragedy!
Reminds me of Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum and The Kommandant's Girl by Pam Jenoff, with the strength of the female characters and time frame and the unexpected twists!