Thursday, April 14, 2011

Anya's War by Andrea Alban - Book Review

Anya Rosen and her family have left their home in Odessa for Shanghai, believing that China will be a safe haven from Hitler's forces. At first, Anya's life in the Jewish Quarter of Shanghai is privileged and relatively carefree: she has crushes on boys, fights with her mother, and longs to defy expectations just like her hero, Amelia Earhart.

Then Anya finds a baby--a newborn abandoned on the street. Amelia Earhart goes missing. And it becomes dangerously clear that no place is safe--not for Jewish families like the Rosens, not for Shanghai's poor, not for adventurous women pilots.

Based on a true story, here is a rich, transcendent novel about a little-known time in Holocaust history.

 My thoughts:

Oh how I love a good book that not only is written well but teaches me something.   One of the things that most captivates me about books, is the ability to be transported all over the world and all throughout different eras, making it seem like I'm right there with the characters, seeing what they're seeing and feeling what they're feeling.

The book focuses on Anya and her daily life in Shanghai....portraying a horrific time and place but seeing through the eyes of a child.

You get a real good look into a Jewish refugee community in China, the ups and downs, the daily going ons from a simple trip to the Kosher butcher, to Sabbath.

The fact that the author based the book on her own family historical events, is a huge plus for me.  I felt like I got a bit of everything, definitely historical fiction but mixed in with a bit of biography and romance.  

I loved the book.  Thumbs up!!!

Thank you to Nina Lesowitz, author of The Courage Companion for the review copy of Anya's War.

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