This past weekend I finished reading “Sarah’s Key,”
by Tatiana dey Rosney. In 1942 ten year old Sarah is arrested with her family
by the French Police in the Vel’ d’Hiv roundup during World War II. Sarah locks her
brother in the cupboard thinking that he would be safe and that they would be
back shortly to rescue him. On 2002 of the 60th anniversary of the tragic
event American expat Julia Jarmond is asked to write an article about that terrible
event in France’s past. During the investigation Julia discovers somehow Sarah’s
history is connected to her husband’s family somehow.
Pros & Cons
While I wouldn’t call it my favorite story I like
the fact that it touches on a lesser known part of World War II history France.
Many Jewish people both foreign and French born were rounded up and either
killed there or sent to various concentration camps. Many of the poor
unfortunate souls were Jewish children. Even
though you know the inevitable tragedy that happens with Sarah’s brother Michel,
you have to admire Sarah for being determined to save him. I like Julia’s
tenacity to figure out what happened. For some reason I felt the going back and
forth in time in the book every chapter didn’t work for me. I think it should have
been the first half being 1942 and then the second half could have been 2002
with Julia’s story. I also felt Julia’s husband Bertrand was the stereotypical Frenchman
who took a mistress. I was also glad Julia did not go through with the abortion
he was pressuring her to have. The ending had to have been my favorite part
which I won’t spoil here.
Overall it was decent. Would I call it my favorite?
Nope. I think if it was written differently it would have gotten higher marks