Shadows of A Childhood
A Novel of War and FriendshipBook - 1998
Ir#65533;ne N#65533;mirovsky's posthumous Suite Fran#65533;aise has become a publishing phenomenon, selling more than half a million copies since its publication in 2006. As those who know it are keenly aware, N#65533;mirovsky was killed by the Nazis before she had a chance to write the last three sections of what she intended to be a five-part work. As Claire Messud wrote in Bookforum , N#65533;mirovsky's "hope in the midst of hopelessness . . . is a rare gift."
As they were being deported to concentration camps, N#65533;mirovsky and her husband, like so many other German Jews, sent their two young daughters, then five and seven, to live under assumed identities--in this case in a Catholic boarding school in the south of France--which enabled them to survive the war. The younger daughter, Elisabeth Gille, became a well-known French publisher, and chronicled her wartime experiences in her own novel, Shadows of a Childhood .
Originally published long before the manuscript of Suite Fran#65533;aise was discovered, Shadows of a Childhood is now available for N#65533;mirovsky fans who want to know more about the circumstances of her death and her daughters' survival. Gille's haunting novel is a moving sequel to her mother's masterpiece and an important part of an extraordinary family's literary legacy.