Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly ⭐️⭐️⭐️
First of all the name of this book is all wrong. But luckily that didn’t matter much. It’s a good, but not fantastic story based on real events, exceptional women and survival. I was on a long wait list for this book so I expected a bit more from it.
Kelly takes the reader on a journey, following three women from distinctly different backgrounds during World War II. Herta a young German doctor trying to prove herself as both a doctor and a woman. Kasia a young Polish women and a member of the resistance in Nazi occupied Poland. And Caroline Ferriday a real women whose bravery and work to right injustice is little known in the USA. Caroline is a wealthy American woman of French ancestry fighting the war from the states the only way she can- by volunteering, processing French immigrants, helping get children out of Europe and collecting money from her wealthy circle of “friends”.
The separate paths of these women will collide, but before that happens each of these women will make decisions that lead to regret in ways none of them could have ever foreseen as happy young girls growing up.
Lilac Girls, much like the book Mischling I read last year, will open your eyes to the horrors of Nazi Germany and the far reaching effects of racial cleansing and Arian supremacy.
Although based on a real life woman (Ferriday) the other characters are a conglomeration of real and fictional women. The story dragged a bit towards the end but I appreciated the ending and the photos from Ferriday’s personal collection. Only at the end of the book are lilacs even mentioned. I found the title completely ridiculous, and a better title I believe would create more interest in what is another interesting WWII novel.
The Lilac Girls 4 stars