1 journaler for this copy...
An absolutely stunning book, which I can without qualification recommend to anyone. It is rare that a book as well done as this one comes along to be found on the shelves at the local book store; even more rare is that this one was written over 60 years ago. The manuscript was saved by Nemirovky's daughter who carted it all over France with her hiding from the French police and the Germans after the author and her husband were deported & taken away to Auschwitz. I was very curious when I began this novel and read the appendices first -- make sure you have a hanky because you'll need it.
The first section of this novel (originally planned to be in 4 parts) is called "Storm in June", and begins with the evacuation of Paris after the Germans take France. The author examines this event through the eyes of various people who come from different backgrounds -- the aristocratic families, the poor, the middle class, the rich, and briefly examines each group both in terms of themselves and their reactions to the others. The instinct for survival at any cost is also examined here.
The second part of the book, entitled "Dolce", focuses on life during the Occupation in one small town in the countryside. Less frantic in tone than the first part, the author looks at the effect on the locals and on the Germans when a small force of German soldiers occupies this area and some of the officers are billeted in private homes, in a place where the war has left no one untouched.
It is an amazing book, one I'll not forget for a long while. If you do not read anything else this year, please read this one.