Last week Marcia from The Printed Page and I discussed Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay. I missed our wrap up on Friday due to illness so I’m posting now instead.
Sarah’s Key was such a powerful and emotionally charged book. I haven’t read a book such as this for a long time and it will be a long time, if ever, that this one will leave my memory. I know it sounds odd to say you enjoy a book like this since it has a lot of difficult subject matter to read but you enjoy it in that it’s one of those books that it’s important for you to read and learn from.
The story is told in a real and honest way that I appreciated. The beginning of the book is told in small bits from both Sarah’s perspective back in 1942 and then Julia’s perspective in 2002. The start of this novel will grab you and not let go—you are literally compelled to continue reading even though all the while you are horrified with what you are learning about that awful time in history. That time being the round up of the Jewish people by the French police in 1942. People being taken to a stadium and left there in the most horrible conditions imaginable without food or drink and then shipped off to their deaths.
This book falls for me right along with Diary of Anne Frank in that way of leaving me feeling so sad. Sad that this happened to human beings. Sad that it was allowed to happen. I will not forget what I’ve read in this novel ever. The author drew me so completely into both Sarah’s and Julia’s story that I felt I knew them personally. I shed many tears reading this novel and that’s not necessarily a bad thing–it shows me that I’m human and that there is no way I could ever treat another human being in this kind of way. It showed me again the strength of people who were put in these circumstances to survive.
Like Marcia, I read this novel in a few days and like her also the only part I felt detracted from the story was the later half when it reverts only to Julia. I didn’t really feel that Julia’s marriage had much to do with the story at all and could have been left out. Still, Julia was a character I really liked and I wanted the best for her in the end. Sarah’s Key was impossible to put down once I started reading it. I needed to know what would happen to Sarah—would she survive, would she save her brother, would her heart be broken…
Many thanks to Marcia for sharing the first By the Chapter book discussion with me. It was really great and this was such a good book to start off with. It would make such a good book club selection as there is so much to discuss. If you missed any of our By the Chapter installments, check them out here…
- Monday here at The Printed Page
- Tuesday here at Peeking Between the Pages
- Wednesday here at The Printed Page
- Thursday here at Peeking Between the Pages
- Friday Marcia’s wrap up here and also a guest post by the author here and above for the wrap up at Peeking Between the Pages
Check back as I’ll have my final review hopefully posted sometime today too. Thanks to all who commented and joined in the discussion.