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Author: Jenna Blum
Goodreads Synopsis: “For fifty years, Anna Schlemmer has refused to talk about her life in Germany during World War II. Her daughter, Trudy, was only three when she and her mother were liberated by an American soldier and went to live with him in Minnesota. Trudy’s sole evidence of the past is an old photograph: a family portrait showing Anna, Trudy, and a Nazi officer, the Obersturmfuhrer of Buchenwald.
Driven by the guilt of her heritage, Trudy, now a professor of German history, begins investigating the past and finally unearths the dramatic and heartbreaking truth of her mother’s life.”
Review: I didn’t LOVE this book but I did really enjoy the perspective of Germany during WWII. The only other book I’ve read in the perspective of Germany was The Book Thief, and while I’ve read numerous WWII stories, this was the first the examined what life for a German woman during the War may have been like. The story goes from the present to the past with the story of Anna during the War. The story examines what I’m sure is true on how women felt they needed to survive during the War. But it does more than that, it shows that not all people are one dimensional during this time period, while some were exactly how you would expect, Blum dives a little deeper to bring to life an understanding that might have been considered one sided for so long.
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Let’s be honest, we all know I enjoy interpretations of WWII so even if this story had some spots that felt a little long, my rating is still going to be high mainly because I feel every story, every perspective and every interpretation during a time of such hatred and unnecessary evil deserves to be understood and read.
Overall Rating: 4/5 stars