Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Lest my readers think I hate everything I read, I don't. If I hated everything, I could work for an agent and be a robo-rejector. Only kidding.
Instead, I may be late to the party, but I loved Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay. It had been sitting in my slush pile for a long time, but my mood was right this past week. I lost myself in the story.
For those of you who don't know the story, it's a pair of tales about a current era journalist who becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to a French Jewish girl swept up during the Holocaust. Set against the horrors of a round up of Jews in Paris in July 1942, the story jumps between the journalist seeking the truth of what happened, and a child who left her younger brother behind in an apartment in Paris.
The juxtaposition of the twin stories works. In too many books, this technique feels forced. de Rosnay draws a fine line between the two stories, leading to the inevitable merging at the end. de Rosnay writes with a clear and lucid prose and avoids the pathos a lesser writer might have used.
I have the reading club version and was so proud to see two friends' names in the acknowledgment section. Both Marilyn Amerson, librarian of our local Westlake Library, and Marion Higgins, member of the Lake Writers, went out of their way to spread the word about the novel.
It was a worthy read and most thought-provoking. I can't wait to read de Rosnay's sequel, A Secret Kept.