Skip to main content

Book Review: Sarah's Key: A Novel by Tatiana de Rosnay



Sarah's Key: A Novel by Tatiana de Rosnay alternates between two characters who are experiencing the Vel’ d’Hiv roundup in France in very different ways. First is Sarah, a Jewish child living in France during World War II, who is arrested along with her parents during the roundup. To save her younger brother, she locks him in a hidden cupboard, taking the key with her, figuring she'll be back shortly to let him out. Second is Julia Jarmond, a journalist living in France in 2002, who stumbles upon Sarah's story while writing an article about the 60th anniversary of the roundup. She becomes determined to find out what happened to Sarah, and how their lives are connected.

I read Sarah's Key over a year ago, but it's a novel that has stuck with me and probably always will. This was a difficult read due to the subject matter, especially as a mother of a 4 year old boy (at the time I read it). But it was definitely worth it. It's a very fast read that pulls you in so you don't want to put it down. For the first half, I found I was rushing through the sections taking place in 2002 so I could get back to see what happened next in 1942. But in the end, the more modern-day story held my attention.

I've seen this novel described as "haunting" and I think this is the perfect word for it. The story is disturbing enough that I consciously block parts of it from my mind. To read about the suffering these children experienced is heart-wrenching. However, I would still highly recommend this book. It is a compelling book about a very important, but not well-known historical event. I had never read about the Vel’ d’Hiv roundup before. Hearing about France's involvement in the roundup of thousands of Jews, particularly the children who were taken during this time, was awful but enlightening as well.

My Rating: 4/5

Reading group guide and discussion questions for Sarah's Key: A Novel

This review was written based on a copy of Sarah's Key that I purchased.

Comments

  1. Great review! I received this book from my book blogger Secret Santa and am looking forward to reading it. I didn't know that part of the story took place in modern times. That's cool. Glad to hear it was such a great and memorable read.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by! I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Popular posts from this blog

Banned Books Week: Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park

This is the end of Banned Books Week and unfortunately, I haven't had a lot of time to write about banned books this year. But I did want to include at least one post about it, so today I wanted to share one of the book series that it seems most people are surprised to find on the list: Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park.

According to Wikipedia:
The Junie B. Jones series came in at #71 on the American Library Association's list of the Top 100 Banned or Challenged Books from 2000-2009. Reasons cited are poor social values taught by the books and Junie B. Jones not being considered a good role model due to her mouthiness and bad spelling/grammar. This is an interesting example of a banned book. Many times there are serious, controversial topics featured in books that are challenged. Things like homosexuality, drugs, vulgar language, etc. You can actually understand why people may not want their children to read those books, and why they may challenge their inclusion in school libra…

Book Review: No Story to Tell by KJ Steele

Victoria has been put down since the day she was born. First by her parents who were disappointed that she survived while her twin brother died. Then by her verbally abusive husband and his low-life friends. But soon an intriguing artist named Elliott arrives in town and starts encouraging Victoria to follow her dream of opening her own dance studio. She also begins to receive phone calls from a mysterious someone who gets her to open up about her past and face her true feelings.

In No Story to Tell, KJ Steele has captured the small-town atmosphere and brought these characters to life. From the victimized Victoria, to her drunk and obnoxious husband Bobby and his drunk and obnoxious friends, to all the side characters who you'd expect to encounter in a town like this ~ all are so realistic in both their actions and their voices. She has written a compelling story of an abused woman who thinks she is trapped in this loveless, miserable existence. But then she finds a spark of hope…

Book Review: I See You by Clare Mackintosh

Title: I See You
Author: Clare Mackintosh
Genre: thriller
Published: February 21, 2017
Format: ebook (NetGalley)
Source: publisher
Buy on Amazon(affiliate link)


Have you ever felt like someone was watching you? You will after reading Clare Mackintosh's latest release I See You. Told from the perspectives of two women, one who appears to be targeted by a criminal and the other who is the police officer working the case, this psychological thriller will have you looking over your own shoulder by the end.

Zoe is a typical working mother who takes the Underground through London to her office every day. Like most commuters, she has a routine that she follows every day, leaving home at the same time, sitting in the same train car, taking the same route to work from the station. It's habit. But she starts to realize this may not be a good idea after seeing her own photo in an advertisement in the newspaper. Another woman who appears in the advertisement is murdered and Zoe starts to ge…