I’ve always thought that I knew generally what happened during the war, but this book was about a side that I had never even heard of.
We’ve all heard of the genocide that the Germans enacted on the Jews, but I had never heard of the genocide that the Soviets inflicted on the Baltic states.
The story is told from the point of view of a teenage Lithuanian girl whose family is deported into slavery in Siberia.
I read a good portion of this book in a crowded Panera in the lunch rush. There were people talking all around me and bumping into my table and I was shoveling a salad that I didn’t even taste into my mouth and fighting back tears.
A crowded Panera is not the place for tears.
But this book was a book that I could not put down. I could not be embarrassed of crying in Panera.
This is another book about horrible, awful things. But it’s also a book about beautiful things. It’s a book that illuminates the small kindnesses that people show in the darkest times. It shows how the smallest person can show great bravery or love.
This book is fabulous. It has brought to light an entire world that I never knew existed. It made me feel for people I didn’t know were hurting.
Now I want to go to the library and do my research. I’m ashamed of not knowing this somehow.