Book Review: Sarah’s Key

Sadly, I think the Blogger Book Club that I was so excited to join back in May is no more. I’ve checked the host blogger’s sites each month to no avail – I’m not sure if maybe their sites moved or what, but there has not been a link up for the club since June’s review of The Help. Sad face.

So instead of reading the next book on the list (Bossypants by Tina Fey), I’ve been doing my own thing and reading some books I’ve had on my bookshelf forever. One such book happened to be Sarah’s Key, by Tatiana de Rosnay.

sarah's key

When I first started reading this book (eons ago), I got a few pages in and for whatever reason set it aside because it didn’t hold my interest. Let me tell you – I picked this up again a few weeks ago and absolutely devoured it. Once I started reading, I could not stop.

The book focuses on Julia Jarmond, an American woman living in Paris with her French husband and daughter. She is an American writer and is assigned to write a story about the Vel d’Hiv roundup of Jews in France in 1942 – which leads us to the story of Sarah, a ten-year old girl who is arrested with her parents in the roundup. What we find out in the first few pages is that when they are arrested, Sarah locks her four year old brother in a hidden cupboard in the house and promises to come back to get him, thinking they will be back to the house in a few hours.

During Julia’s research for the story, she stumbles upon Sarah’s story – leading to a long hidden family secret and puts her marriage into the spotlight.

The first two-thirds of the book switches between Julia’s story and Sarah’s story – and we don’t know where Sarah’s story is leading or what will happen. I was absolutely riveted and could not put the book down, engrossed in not only Sarah’s story but Julia’s as well. I found my heart breaking for both characters and lost lots of sleep staying up to read “just one more chapter”.

I do have to say that the end of the book did fall a little flat for me – once we found out about Sarah and the story focused more on Julia, I feel like de Rosnay didn’t know where she wanted to go and the storyline didn’t hold my attention as much,, I was much more engrossed in Sarah’s story. (Plus – Sarah’s ending was not what I was expecting – but it was completely realistic.) That didn’t stop my from reading the entire book in about a week. Plus, it was historical fiction at it’s finest – and centered on a topic that I don’t tend to read much about.

Bottom line: if you haven’t already, (the book was published in 2007) read it!! You won’t regret it.

Other books on my bookshelf:

the light between oceans submerged gone girl

The Light Between Oceans, by M.L. Stedman

Submerged, by Dani Pettrey

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn

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2 thoughts on “Book Review: Sarah’s Key

  1. I totally agree with your review- I have read a few of her books and I love them. This book had an original storyline that was quite intriguing- but I feel the ending could have been stronger (although the story was still great!). I just picked up ‘Gone Girl’ and plan to start it soon!

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