General Rating: If you enjoyed Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale, you’ll also like The Book of Lost Names. Seventy-six percent of over 28,000 readers rated this book five stars.
Skip factor: Nothing.
Who should read: If you love good writing or World War II stories, this book is definitely for you.
Most heart wrenching line: Not that it made a difference; the only thing anyone would notice was the six-pointed yellow star stitched onto the left side of her cardigan. It erased all the other parts of her that mattered—her identity as a daughter, a friend, an Anglophile working toward her doctorate in English literature. To so many in Paris now, she was nothing but a Jew.
Summary: Eva is one of only two students in the English department to wear the yellow star—Joseph Pelletier is the other.
It’s 1942 and Eva lives in France with her parents, works at the library, and attends university. Rumors circulate that Russians will not deport French-born Jews, but one evening while Eva and her mother are babysitting for a woman down the hall, soldiers come and take her father away. She and her mother flee to France’s Free zone. There, Eva’s artistic talents help her forge thousands of documents and save the lives of numerous Jewish children. Not wanting them to lose their identity, she secretly codes a book with the names the children were born with.
Her path crosses many French, Jews, and even Russians. Her friend Joseph comes back into her life. Who can she trust?
Writing: Wonderfully flowing and keeps your undivided attention. Harmel’s superb writing will capture your heart and cajole you into loving Eva.
Read this author again? Absolutely.
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CJ Zahner is the author of The Suicide Gene, a psychological thriller; psychic thrillers Dream Wide Awake, Project Dream, and The Dream Diaries; and Chick Lit novels Friends Who Move Couches and Don’t Mind Me, I Came with the House. Zahner’s dream series novels were inspired by first-hand experiences. See the video of her 9/11 premonition here. Download her Beyond Reality Radio podcast here. Follow her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, BookBub, or LinkedIn. Purchase her books on Amazon.