I’ve read a lot of books from the Jewish perspective of the Holocaust, but lately, I’ve been reading books about other stories of World War II, especially in Europe.
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I loved Resistance Women, and this week, I read The Daughter’s Tale by Armando Lucas Correa about a Jewish family living in Berlin in the 1930s. The father, Julius, is a renowned heart doctor, and the wife, Amanda, is raising their two small daughters, Viera and Lina.
One day, Julius is snatched from his office by the Nazis, but only after a violent struggle, and taken to a camp. Through his contacts as a heart specialist, he’s able to arrange a plan for his wife and daughters to escape Germany. However, Julius’ contact can’t get visas for the entire family to go together; the best he can do is get to visas for the girls to go on a ship to Cuba to stay with their uncle and for Amanda to stay with a family friend in France.
The problem is that the daughters are only 4 and 6, and Amanda can’t bear to send them alone on the ship. In the end, she takes a gamble and changes her plans, which has dramatic repercussions for all three women.
Historically, I appreciated that this story covered two lesser known events in World War II history and that Amanda and her daughters were swept up in both of them. I also appreciated that this book reiterated how difficult and deadly this war was for millions of people and how capricious life is. Some people in this book took measures that they thought would save their lives, but due to forces outside their control, they still landed in the hands of the enemy.
The majority of the book focuses on just one daughter, so I would have enjoyed hearing more about the other daughter’s story. There was some information about her story in the periphery–namely the first few chapters and the last chapter, but I didn’t feel like this was enough.
I give this book 4 out of 5 stars on the Mom’s Plans’ scale.