A Sparrow in Terezin, a novel by Kristy Cambron, is both compelling and haunting. It is told by two different women living in two different time periods. The present day story is that of Sera’s and opens on her wedding day. Shortly after the ceremony her husband is arrested and taken away in handcuffs. She is convinced he is innocent of the charges brought against him. She will do whatever necessary to help prove his innocence. The parallel story is Kaja’s who in 1939 finds her life turned inside out when she is forced to flee her home in Nazi occupied Prague. Leaving her parents behind, she, her sister and brother in law reach Palestine. She eventually moves to London and almost loses her life as the result of a bombing. She then becomes determined to return to Prague to learn the fate of her parents and it is while she is there that she is thrown into the unimaginable world of Terezin. Trying to cope with a world she no longer understands, she finds herself placed in charge of educating the children of Terezin. There is nothing that prepared her for this or for what is to come.
Even though Sera’s and Kaja’s worlds are different, they share at least one commonality and that is their loyalty to those they love. Two women living in different times, but still sharing a connection.
The author skillfully blends the present with history. She has crafted a powerful and moving story of courage and honor. I highly recommend reading this exceptional book.
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