Reviewer: Amy Lignor
Title: The Lost Wife
Author: Alyson Richman
Release Date: September 2011
Genre/Sub-genre: General/Historical Fiction
Year/Setting: 1934-2000/Prague & America
Overall Rating: 5.0
Sexual Content Rating: Subtle/Sensual
Language (Profanity/Slang) Content Rating: Mild/Moderate
Violent Content Rating: Intense/Extreme (Wartime)
Alyson's Website/Blog: www.alysonrichman.com
I have to say this is a truly beautiful love story that takes place during the final "happy" and "calm" moments before Europe exploded into war.
Lenka, a young student studying art in Prague; and Josef, another student studying medicine, who is also the brother of Lenkaís best friend, fall in love. They are married and look forward to a lovely quality of life together with no problems in the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, the Naziís arrive and invade most of Europe, and this once happy and blissful couple are torn apart by the war.
Josef, his parents, and sister are able to escape Prague and go to England, but Lenka refuses to leave her family behind and stays in Prague. Josef offers Lenka a sincere promise that she and her family will soon join him, if itís the last thing he does. This is not to be, however, as the Naziís invade the country and Lenka and her family are sent to the ghetto of Terezin.
Giving up, Josef and his family leave England behind and head for America, when a German U-Boat sinks their ship and Josef is the only one of his family left alive. As time moves slowly forward, Josef eventually becomes a doctor in New York, marries, and has two children, but never forgets the wife he left behind; a wife, he completely believes, has been a casualty of the hideous war.
But Lenka is very much alive, and is also the only survivor in her family. Getting through the war, she eventually ends up in the United States married to a former Army officer. Years later and many miles away from Europe, there is an unforeseen meeting in New York - a moment of recognition that may just give Josef and Lenka another chance.
This is a very moving story. Beginning with true love and going through tragedy and eventually survival, Lenka and Josefís story will make you weep for a couple that started out so wonderfully, just to go through the horrific heartbreak of one of the most horrible experiences of the 20th Century. A straight ĎAí across the board!
Until next time,
Question or comment regarding the review or the book? Click here and let Amy know.