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For the Love of Literature

As a bibliophile, my passion for books coalesces with a love of writing, and writing book reviews allows me to share literature with the world.

And a Child Shall Lead Them

Saving Amelie - Cathy Gohlke

When good people do nothing…

Germany, 1939: Three very different people find themselves in the midst of the Third Reich’s rise, each with their own problems. Rachel Kramer comes to Germany on a business trip with her adoptive father, a United States eugenicist working with Drs. Verschuer and Mengele. She has lived a privileged life among the American and German elite, but soon her idyllic future becomes a nightmare embroiled in the turbulent times. Also in Germany, foreign correspondent Jason Young works to provide the American public with the reality of Hitler’s regime while passing censorship. Meanwhile, Lea Hartman and her loving husband Friederich make a frugal living in the small town of Oberammergau, which is renowned for its decennial Passion Play. A woman’s dying wish changes all of their lives forever, at a time when standing for humanity means defying the SS.

In the vein of “The Sound of Music” and Anne Blankman’s “Prisoner of Night and Fog,” Cathy Gohlke beautifully and soberly orchestrates the inventive storyline of “Saving Amelie.” Told from various third-person points of view, it provides a unique perspective on the World War II narrative. The primary focus is not on Jews but on the overall refugee experience as the novel progresses at an adrenaline-inducing pace with disturbing parallels to modern times. The Christian theme materializes and blossoms in a humble, natural manner, exploring true grace as opposed to “cheap grace” and the consequences that result when good people do nothing. The fortitude of both the fictional and real characters stands as a testament to the men and women who heroically maintained and discovered Christian discipleship during this dark period in history. Appended to the end of the novel are discussion questions and a note from the author.