Sophie Siegel has moved several times throughout Germany as her family has seen the rights of fellow Jewish residents diminish and anti-Semitism rising to new heights. In 1940, they settled in the small town of Ortschaft. Sophie is heartbroken when she can no longer go to school, something she loves. Life soon gets much worse, and Sophie finds herself on her own hoping to keep her young best friend Gideon “Giddy” Goldfarb safe. From being transported to the local Ghetto established to contain the area's Jewish families to the deportation to a concentration camp, Sophie sees the continued horrors of Nazi Germany's plan to eliminate her people in this vivid and moving story.
David Michael Slater has utilized historical fiction combined with magical realism to tell a tale that will leave you deeply affected. All books about the Holocaust are important yet many feel repetitive. Not The Vanishing. The author has taken such a unique approach to telling this story, which is often raw and hard to read yet extremely compelling. Slater is an excellent storyteller, and the characters are all well-formed and complex. Having all this evil and brutality seen through the eyes of a child is beyond heartbreaking. Even with some very tough parts to get through, I highly recommend this book to adult readers as well as high schoolers. It's a short book (just under 200 pages) and moves quickly. There's so much packed into these pages. Don't miss it.
Many thanks to the author and Library Tales Publishing for the opportunity to read this unforgettable book in advance of its publication.
Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Historical Fiction / Magical Realism / Fantasy.
Publication Date: September 29, 2022.
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