Title: The Keeper of Hidden Books
Author: Madeline Martin
Publication: August 1, 2023
Publisher: Hanover Square Press
Genre: Historical Fiction
SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)
All her life, Zofia has found comfort in two things during times of hardship: books and her best friend, Janina. But no one could have imagined the horrors of the Nazi occupation in Warsaw. As the bombs rain down and Hitler’s forces loot and destroy the city, Zofia finds that now books are also in need of saving.
With the death count rising and persecution intensifying, Zofia jumps to action to save her friend and salvage whatever books she can from the wreckage, hiding them away, and even starting a clandestine book club. She and her dearest friend never surrender their love of reading, even when Janina is forced into the newly formed ghetto.
But the closer Warsaw creeps toward liberation, the more dangerous life becomes for the women and their families – and escape may not be possible for everyone. As the destruction rages around them, Zofia must fight to save her friend and preserve her culture and community using the only weapon they have left – literature.
**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**
I love historical fiction and I love books (obviously!) so I knew I had to read this book. I also really enjoy reading stories about people that were heroes in different ways during the war. Martin wrote a beautiful story about resilience and strength in a time that should have crumbled most.
The story follows Zofia as she literally grows up as the war is kicking off, almost forced into being an adult. She becomes this fierce protector of books and all things good. I love Zofia’s personality in this. I cannot necessarily relate because I’ve never even come close to being in a situation like her, but I can relate to her fierceness and her ability to just set aside her feelings and do a job that needs done no matter how scared she is. She takes life by the horns and just does what needs done. I find her personality refreshing and this story to be so hopeful as you watch her do the things she does and just survive.
Martin has written a beautiful story that shows us the side of the war we don’t usually see much of. I love reading about unsung heroes and the little things that people did that made a huge difference. That is such a strong message for that time. I will definitely be checking out more from Martin in the future.