"The Book of Lost Names", by Kristin Harmel

"The Book of Lost Names" - Kristin Harmel

This latest chronicles the story of a skilled forger who risks her life to help hundreds of Jewish children escape the Nazis during World War 11. This unforgettable historical novel is inspired by an astonishing true story. “The Book of Lost Names” is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit in the face of evil. This is the story of Eva Traube, her story transitions between 2005 in Florida and France 1940 where the life of a young Polish-French changed for ever.

The dual time line is easy to follow, it is smoothly done. Mostly set during the war, of course there is a great deal about the French Resistance and the incredible important role the forgers had to play in order to save thousands of lives. We follow Eva’s journey into a world of inner working of networks and into Eva’s personal sacrifice. We also have a love story of two people which time is not on their side.

The writing is touching and much care is brought to each character making this one of the most engaging stories I have read in some time. Who to trust and who not to trust were on everyone’s mind and the author highlights the struggles Eva suffered to find the right balance. There is a lot to this story, so much humanity in the words, so much pain…In Eva`s clandestine group we will meet other forgers, a priest, a bookstore keeper, her landlady and her mother who plays an important role. These good people are just a drop of good people doing dangerous activities under the nose of the Nazis.….many of them will be betrayed and will never be seen again…

The author tells us although her story is based on true historical facts she took liberty to change place, names and modified events to give her more freedom to transport us into a heart-warming story that would stay with us after the closing page….This page-turner surely did for me. This is one novel I had a very hard time to put down. Well-done.

I receive the ARC from the publisher Simon & Schuster Canada via Netgalleys for my unbiased and voluntary opinion.