Anna Patrick’s sense of time and place is perfect and this compelling book reminds us not only of mankind’s capacity for cruelty but also for love, courage and survival against all odds.
by Maria Guiva
This is an exceptional debut novel in its ability to convey the terror and grief that affected anyone with a heart and soul, regardless of who, where, or what side one might have found themselves on.
Having read many books over the years set in these times and circumstances this particular one has left me reeling with some of the incidents and descriptions. It gave me more insight as to how these times affected everyone, from all aspects of society. In particular the recollections noted in the dairy of the officer’s wife, this could be a story in itself and I didn’t want it to finish.
I don’t know why this author has waited so long to pen this, it’s brilliant! I eagerly await her next novel.
This is a thought provoking tale about a woman whose entire destiny is changed when she undertakes an ill-considered act of love.
There's a brilliant dual narrative throughout the book; following the true story of the author's own Polish mother, and reluctant Gestapo officer, Inspector Bauer and his family.
The author cleverly plays with ideas of cowardice and courage through her characters on both sides of the war, whether persecuted or persecutor, and shows how thin the veil between the two can be.
This is a well researched book (no doubt with plenty of first hand insight too) and is peppered with extraordinary detail about the conditions at the time both in war torn Poland and within the camps. I was left feeling an expanded sense of understanding for the plight of the everyday Pole.
Anna's portrayal of Marta and her rich family history gives fascinating, stranger than fiction, insights into the tragedies suffered by the intelligentsia and the dalliances of crested families!
A really superb debut novel!
by Halina Wielogorska
A totally mesmerising story, so moving, immersing and beautifully told. Read this, plunge in and you will find you do not want to move until you have turned the final page! So thought-provoking and so much to discover in the characters and themes in this book. A gripping exploration of humanity, of our motivations and what we are capable of in the name of love (and war), in all its different forms.
by Monika R