Tuesday, January 17, 2023

WITHIN THESE WALLS OF SORROW by Amanda Barratt, Reviewed by Paula Shreckhise #ReleaseDay

“Strength is not to live without fear but to live in spite of it. God would show me how to find that strength when I could not find it.”

Based on real events, this story contains stark realism that should shake us to our bones.

I applaud Ms Barratt for choosing to tell such a hard story, for it needs to be told. She is a master at bringing truth to the forefront.

I wish every high school student in America could read this book. The author wrote in such a way that you were right there with the characters. It is told through two sets of eyes: Hania, a Jewish girl who experiences the worst the Germans could mete out and Zosia, a widowed Polish pharmacist who risks everything to help a few Jewish families. In spite of the degradation, hardship and danger, they don’t lose faith. Hope on the other hand, is elusive. But they turn to God when there is nothing else left. They realize He is ever present and He knows and sees all of us.

This is a must read--a hard, heart-wrenching story that causes soul searching as we ponder with Zosia: Could I have done more? It is even more sobering to discover the story is based on real people experiencing real situations.

Ms Barratt has taken an event of epic proportions and brought it to a personal level.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kregel on behalf of the author. I was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.* 5 stars and a solid faith thread.

BackCover Blurb:

Zosia Lewandowska knows the brutal realities of war all too well. Within weeks of Germany's invasion of her Polish homeland, she lost the man she loves. As ghetto walls rise and the occupiers tighten their grip on the city of Krakow, Zosia joins pharmacist Tadeusz Pankiewicz and his staff in the heart of the Krakow ghetto as they risk their lives to aid the Jewish people trapped by Nazi oppression.

Hania Silverman's carefree girlhood is shattered as her family is forced into the ghetto. Struggling to survive in a world hemmed in by walls and rife with cruelty and despair, she encounters Zosia, her former neighbor, at the pharmacy. As deportation winnow the ghetto's population and snatch those she holds dear, Hania's natural resiliency is exhausted by reality.

Zodia and Hania's lives intertwine as they face the griefs and fears thrust upon them by war, until one day, they are forced to make a desperate choice . . . one that will inexorably bind them together, even as they are torn apart.

Amanda Barratt's meticulous research and lush, award-winning writing shine once again in this moving look at a group of unsung heroes who fought for hope and humanity in the most harrowing of times. 

Kregel Publishing, January, 2023
Available in digital ebook and paperback:
Buy WITHIN THESE WALLS OF SORROW at Amazon, Christianbook .com, or Baker Book House

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