Princess Allesandra: “It is often in the darkest skies that we see the brightest star.”
A truly remarkable story which is all the more remarkable when I realized that this is the fictional account of a real Italian princess who was sent to Buchenwald during WWII.
There are many recent books about the appalling treatment of people by the Germans in WWII. But each is unique and this author excells in using this story to bring hope.
I adore dual timelines and this was no exception. The way Ms. Goyer meshed the eras together was impressive. Each time period had me eager to see what happened next. The characters jumped off the page. The theme of being light in the darkness came through in multiple ways. Present day Olivia and Louis were shown to have a solid faith. Louis, although he was a prince, was portrayed as a realistic human being with hopes, dreams and a caring heart. Likewise, in 1939, Princess Alessandra was pictured as a godly, selfless person who wanted to bring hope to the hopeless. The lesson I took away : We each have a place in God’s plan, no matter our station in life.
Olivia Garza, a woman committed to making a difference in the world, thrives in her unconventional, service-oriented life. By day, she helps troubled teens in inner-city Little Rock. By night, she creates a viral docu-series in an attempt to better understand her mother’s desperate decisions by retracing her steps with a camera. So far, Olivia has always been the anonymous narrator, but she’s promised to reveal herself in the last stop on her documentary: Kenya.
Prince Louis, heir to the throne of the small European kingdom of Alloria, is in Kenya to run away from a broken heart—and the media circus that comes with it. When he meets Olivia, he recognizes her voice right away from the docu-series that has stirred his heart. Though they share a magical day on safari, any dreams of happily ever after come crashing down with the flash of the paparazzi cameras when Olivia realizes that he represents everything she most despises in the world.
In World War II Rome, another royal, however, has her own life-changing choices to make. Princess Alessandra Appiani could have chosen quiet safety within the walls of the Vatican, but instead she risks her life—and her family—to save the Jewish children so in need of someone to show them the love of God.
When Olivia is hired to help create a documentary about Alessandra, learning about the sacrifice of a royal who goes from palace to prison forces her to face the hardest questions of all: Should she continue on the path she’s carved for herself or trust God to give her the future she never thought she wanted?