Friday, December 12, 2008

I knew instantly.....

When I came across Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay in the book blogs I visit, I knew instantly that I have to read it. I tried to find in the bookstores I visit often but couldn't. When I requested a copy from the author, her publicist was kind enough to send me one. I am very glad I read it.

Title: Sarah's Key
Author: Tatiana de Rosnay
ISBN: 9780312370848
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin/2007
Pages: 293/Trade Paperback


Sarah's Key opened up facts I had not known before. That the French police being responsible for rounding up thousands of Jews in Paris and sending them to Auschwitz to die. Those included more than 4000 children between the age of 2 to 12. Those children were citizens of France. But it did not matter a fig for the police. And the people too turned a blind eye. It seems that France has kept it well hidden from the world.


It is July 1942, Paris. Sarah is a ten year old girl, who is taken away from her home along with her parents, in the middle of the night. Meanwhile, she hides her 4 year old brother in a cubboard which is not visible. She promises to come back for him. Her parents are taken away from her and unknown to her, sent to their death.

After 60 years, Julia Jarmond, an American journalist settled in Paris investigates the roundup. She stumbles upon certain secrets which almost rips apart her life. But she knows she has to find out what happened to Sarah Starzynski. And she keeps doing it no matter what. The past and present run in parallel. It keeps the reader rivetted till the end. It stays in mind long after reading the book. We cry with Sarah, for Sarah. We need to know what happened to her. Where did she go? Did she survive at all?

I am glad I got to know about the French connection. It is fiction but it is totally based on facts. And this has made me look up more material on that period of time. What I want to know why did the French keep it all hidden? Even now not much is known about it.

As it is said in the book, Remember. Never forget.

Such books should be read by ALL of us. That is one reason I am posting this review here along with posting it on my other blog, Reading Room.



28 comments:

Whitesnake said...

And just how do you intend to get ME to read?

Deborah Godin said...

Sounds like an important book, for sure. Along similar lines, there's a TV program I saw on the US Public Television station, about the breadth and depth or the Nazi looting of private and museum property during the war, and the heroic efforts to save priceless masterpieces, as well as treasured personal and family mementoes. If anyone is interested, It's called The Rape of Europa. Recovery is still going on. Good post, thanks!

venus66 said...

A very interesting book, Gautami. Will try to get it soon. Thank you.

Lilly said...

I'll put it on my christmas list.

Rinkly Rimes said...

Thanks for a great idea for my Book Group!

Devika said...

Such books interests me no longer, Gautami -- i just read a review or a summary and keep it aside marked..may be for a future reference...

Read quite a lot in my twenties...Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago was an eye-opener..

anyway, good to be introduced. thank you Gautami :)

wishes,
devika

anthonynorth said...

Yes, not many people remember that part of France actually collaborated with the Germans during the war, with its own puppet government.

BJ Roan said...

This sounds like a book I would like to read. Thanks for the recommendation.

keithsramblings said...

Clearly not the easiest book to read. It seems to deal with difficult subjects that I have to say, feature rarely on my wish list when looking for a new book. However, I've noted the title. Who knows? I may just get hold of a copy.

b said...

I knew instantly that I needed to visit you when I saw that you posted on Keith's blog saying, "Good but Rosie's is better." I am just going to Rosie first...and I am not even hiding it.

You must Read "The Ribbon Walk" by Carrie Brown. I simply loved it. A beautiful story about two children.

http://ebookstore.sony.com/ebook/carrie-brown/the-rope-walk/_/R-400000000000000099399

rosey said...

I love it! Can't wait for Keith to read what b just wrote!

As for this book, well I'm not sure if it's me. Tell you what I'll do - I'll persuade Keith to buy it then I can borrow it. Yes, that's it .

sage said...

Sounds like a good book. Have you read W. G. Sebald's "Austerlitz?"

Jennifer Hicks said...

fascinating historical insights...thanks for sharing.

linda may said...

I hadn't heard about this side of the war either until you mentioned it. It was probably hidden out of shame. OR I would hope so.

Rambler said...

sounds like an interesting book

Lilibeth said...

I know it is painful reading a book like this, because it is based on something true, and we don't want to think that humans could be so terrible to each other, but I'm glad the books are being written; maybe as long as we remember, we will do anything in our power to keep these things from happening again. Thanks for the recommendation.

paisley said...

the book sounds deliscious.. i relish anything that surrounds the idea of a concentration camp,,or herding of "inferior humans"... each time i read one i am further convinced that man has become his own god,, or will given the right set of circumstances,,,,

it shames me at times to be part of the human race....

~*sis*~ said...

an interesting part of history that has been missed....i'll look for this book!
thx for visiting my post!

latree said...

you got me wanting this book

Linda Jacobs said...

I love WWII novels so will be looking for this one at the library when I go tomorrow.

Patois said...

Thank you for getting me interested in reading this book.

Fantasies of a Lifetime said...

Sounds like a very interesting book , I will try to get my hands on it next weekend :)

Tumblewords: said...

Humans are such disappointing folks. The truth is much worse than the wildest form of fiction...Nice post!

gel said...

Great review. Isn't it interesting how many readers still don't want to read about occurrences like this? I pass no judgement. I look at it that I'm glad that your review enlightens and motivates people to read and "always remember" what the world must never forget. - I can't do it every week, but I did respond to this weeks' Sunday Scribblings.

Have a great week, G!

San said...

I'm going to keep that title in mind. You should really read Maus by Art Spiegelman. I dont know if you like graphic novels, but this really is one of the best books I've come across.

Matthew said...

Sounds like a good read. Thanks for stopping by my site.

Tammy said...

I had no idea and have read so much about that war. I'll add that to my list. Hug

Amanda said...

Thanks for the book recommendation.