Galerie by Steven Greenberg
Every family has secrets, but some are far darker, reach deeper, and touch a rawer nerve than others.
For Vanesa Neuman, the past is a closed book. The daughter of Holocaust survivors, her childhood in the cramped intimacy of south Tel Aviv is shadowed by her parentsí unspoken wartime experiences. But when her father passes away, the closed book falls literally open. Vanesa decides to unravel the mystery of the diary she has received, and strange symbol in it, at all costs.
Set against the backdrop of the Jewish Museum of Prague during the Nazi occupation – Adolf Eichmann’s “Museum of an Extinct Race” – Galerie is fast-paced historical fiction in the tradition of Tatiana De Rosnayís Sarahís Key. From Jerusalemís Yad VíShem Holocaust research center, to the backstreets of Prague, and into the former ìparadise ghettoî of Theresienstadt ñ Vanesaís journey of understanding will reveal a darker family past than she ever imagined and a secret kept alive for over half a century.
When Vanesa Neuman’s father dies, she gets her father’s old diary from the World War II time. Her parents were Holocaust survivors but never spoke about their past and Vanesa feels like she never really knew her parents. She wants to learn more about her family’s history so she travels to Prague with her father’s old diary, which has an odd symbol in it.
The book divides between 1970’s and 1990’s as present day setting place in Israel, Prague and USA. While I liked the book I wasn’t fan of the format. It jumps between different decades with different people telling the story and I was so confused much of the time. I got used to it with time though. The narrator, Vanesa’s husband, isn’t actually present in almost any of the events and seemed like he told what Vanesa had told him. At times he wasn’t sure if things had gone as he thought they had and that was little annoying.
It was interesting to read how Holocaust had such strong effects even to the survivor’s children and we also see how the survivors are treated after the war. I haven’t read much about the survivors in Israel after the war and this gave some light on that.
Published: Evolved Publishing (October 26, 2015)
Source: Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours
Steven Greenberg is a professional writer, as well as a full-time cook, cleaner, chauffeur, and work-at-home Dad for three amazing young children, and the lucky husband of a loving and very supportive wife. Born in Texas and raised in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Steven emigrated to Israel only months before the first Gulf War, following graduation from Indiana University in 1990. In 1996, he was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces, where he served for 12 years as a Reserves Combat Medic. Since 2002, Steven has worked as an independent marketing writer, copywriter and consultant.
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