Friday, February 26, 2021

Book Spotlight: Gerta

Happy Friday, lambs! I hope you have a good one and that you have a pretty good weekend lined up. I don't have much planned, Olivia is doing a school thing for a good part of the day tomorrow and Matt is working so I think I'm going to do crafts and... clean my office?  

I know, I'm living a thrilling life, calm down. 

I also need to get more reading done. If you are also in that boat, and you are a fan of historical fiction, here is an incredibly interesting book that needs to be on your radar. 

Gerta - Katerina Tuckova

1945. Allied forces liberate Nazi-occupied Brno, Moravia. For Gerta Schnirch, daughter of a Czech mother and a German father aligned with Hitler, it’s not deliverance; it’s a sentence. She has been branded an enemy of the state. Caught in the changing tides of a war that shattered her family—and her innocence—Gerta must obey the official order: she, along with all ethnic Germans, is to be expelled from Czechoslovakia. With nothing but the clothes on her back and an infant daughter, she’s herded among thousands, driven from the only home she’s ever known. But the injustice only makes Gerta stronger, more empowered, and more resolved to seek justice. Her journey is a relentless quest for a seemingly impossible forgiveness. And one day, she will return.

Spanning decades and generations, Kateřina Tučková’s breathtaking novel illuminates a long-neglected episode in Czech history. One of exclusion and prejudice, of collective shame versus personal guilt, all through the eyes of a charismatic woman whose courage will affect all the lives she’s touched. Especially that of the daughter she loved, fought for, shielded, and would come to inspire.
Full disclosure, I am not finished with this one yet but I wanted to give you some insight as I go because though I'm not always a huge historical fiction fan, sometimes one just grabs me. Obviously the story of a young mother being herded away from home gave me visuals of the migrants at the southern US border. I pictured the women who were pregnant, with children already, walking miles and miles for some kind of safety and as I read this book that is what I'm picturing it. At least in the US, this piece of Czech history isn't touched on at all and I know I know a small amount of history of that region as it is but it is heartbreaking to know that things like this affect an entire family for generations after. 

If you are a fan of historical fiction, you will really enjoy this book. If you're just a history buff in general, I think you'll be greatly interested in this and it may inspire you to learn more about this time. The book is a translated version and so far, it has been done incredibly well. I'm roughly 240 pages in and I've only had a few bumps but it might be more me and my cognitive issues than issues with the actual translation. It does flip back and forth between time periods, which I think keeps you more invested throughout. I do think we've got a lot of different perspectives happening at once and I'm having a hard time holding all of these strings in my mind as we go, seeing how they weave together. I do hope this gets easier as the book goes on. 

Thank you to Over the River and Amazon Publishing for gifting me a copy, I am trying to push myself into reading things I think won't be in my wheelhouse and so far, I've been pleasantly surprised. This is also my second book this year that has been translated and they both have a beautiful rhythm to them, I imagine an audiobook version would almost be soothing to listen to. 

This post contains affiliate links. 

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