Title: Code Name Sapphire
Author: Pam Jenoff
Publication: February 7, 2023
Publisher: Park Row
Genre: Historical Fiction
SYNOPSIS: (From Amazon)
1942. Hannah Martel has narrowly escaped Nazi Germany after her fiancé was killed in a pogrom. When her ship bound for America is turned away at port, she has nowhere to go but to her cousin Lily, who lives with her family in Brussels. Fearful for her life, Hannah is desperate to get out of occupied Europe. But with no safe way to leave, she must return to the dangerous underground work she thought she had left behind.
Seeking help, Hannah joins the Sapphire Line, a secret resistance network led by a mysterious woman named Micheline and her enigmatic brother Matteo. But when a grave mistake causes Lily’s family to be arrested and slated for deportation to Auschwitz, Hannah finds herself torn between her loyalties. How much is Hannah willing to sacrifice to save the people she loves?
**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**
As a bonafide fan of Pam Jenoff, I feel I must say that I haven’t found a book by her I don’t like. It’s quite possible I am not slightly biased because I fully expect every book to be just as good. With that said, this book was just as good.
What I love about this book is the absolute reality of the situation. Nothing is sugar coated in Jenoff’s books and Code Name Sapphire is no different. From the first page, the seriousness of the jobs being done and what is at stake is shown in the pages. You feel that intensity, the stress building as people are moved through cities that would easily turn them over to be sent to a concentration camp. I think that is what I loved the most about this book. It’s an incredibly sad story and time in our history, but the way Jenoff doesn’t lessen that severity in her writing while other authors sometimes try and lessen the blow to the reader. I think we need to read that harshness of the world back then. The writing in this book is real, raw, and dark.
With that I also really like the characters in this book. I love reading about people who did heroic things without much of a possibility of a reward in the end. There was far more chance of being caught, tortured, or killed for helping people trying to escape Hitler’s reign. The characters in this book risk it all for little reward. It’s fascinating to know real people like these people exist and I appreciate being able to read such stories.
As usual Jenoff’s writing is flawless and the story flowed nicely while keeping me on the edge of my seat. I was extremely stressed out most of it, but in the most delicious book-reading way. As usual, Jenoff has delivered yet another heart stopping, heartbreaking, hopeful book that kept me interested until the very end. You do not have to ask me twice. I will be reading every book Jenoff writes with high expectations.