Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Book Review: The Girl from Krakow by Alex Rosenberg

Members of the Vise Library were selected to review The Girl from Krakow.  We received a copy of Alex Rosenberg's book for an honest review.

About the book:

It’s 1935. Rita Feuerstahl comes to the university in Krakow intent on enjoying her freedom. But life has other things in store—marriage, a love affair, a child, all in the shadows of the oncoming war. When the war arrives, Rita is armed with a secret so enormous that it could cost the Allies everything, even as it gives her the will to live. She must find a way both to keep her secret and to survive amid the chaos of Europe at war. Living by her wits among the Germans as their conquests turn to defeat, she seeks a way to prevent the inevitable doom of Nazism from making her one of its last victims. Can her passion and resolve outlast the most powerful evil that Europe has ever seen?
In an epic saga that spans from Paris in the ’30s and Spain’s Civil War to Moscow, Warsaw, and the heart of Nazi Germany, The Girl from Krakow follows one woman’s battle for survival as entire nations are torn apart, never to be the same.
The Girl from Krakow is a story about self-preservation, sacrifice and how far you are willing to go before you lose yourself entirely.  To me, this book makes you feel what it may have been line to live during such a frightening time, WWII.  This story takes you through the landscapes of several characters and their experiences in the war.  The main character, Rita, gets married as the war is approaching and as the book begins you learn more of backstory (and why she is hiding the fact that she is a Jew and why her story may interest a Nazi soldier).  By the end of the story Rita has a very hard decision to make concerning what she wants and what is best for another individual.  I won't give too much of the plot away of this book, but just know that this book shows how war can change people.  You also see how some people think they may not be capable of something during normal circumstances, but all of that changes when it comes to war.  
Buy the book:
       Barnes and Noble
      Parnassus Books

About the author:

When he's not writing historical novels, Alex Rosenberg is a professor of philosophy at Duke University.

Alex's first novel, "The Girl From Krakow," is a thriller that explores how a young woman and her lover navigate the dangerous thirties, the firestorm of war in Europe, and how they make sense of their survival.

He is working on his second novel, a murder mystery set in Oxford and London in the 1950s that takes the reader back to before, during and after the second world war in New York.

Before he became a novelist Alex wrote a large number of books about the philosophy of science, especially about economics and biology. These books were mainly addressed to other academics. But in 2011 Alex published a book that explores the answers that science gives to the big questions of philosophy that most atheists (and all thinking people) ask themselves--questions about the nature of reality, the meaning of life, moral values, free will, the relationship of the mind to the brain, and our human future. That book, "The Atheist's Guide to Reality," was widely reviewed and was quite controversia

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