A book that had been on my radar for a while, I was surprised to see this next one at my in-laws’ house. When they finished reading it, they passed it my way and it sat in my to-be-read stack for quite some time before I finally got to it.
We Were the Lucky Ones
by Georgia Hunter
Historical Fiction, WWII
Synopsis According to Mandi:
Without spoilers, We Were the Lucky Ones follows the Kurcs, a Jewish family with roots in Radom, Poland, through their dispersement and reunions amidst the turmoil of World War II. Despite their similar beginnings, Nechuma, Sol, and their five grown children’s stories take different routes as they flee in different directions from Poland, exhibit different methods of survival and are faced with different fates. Through it all, they attempt to care for each other and keep in touch, and in the end, they might just be the lucky ones…
“What matters, she tells herself, is that even on the hardest days, when the grief is so heavy she can barely breathe, she must carry on. She must get up, get dressed, and go to work. She will take each day as it comes. She will keep moving.”– Georgia Hunter, We Were the Lucky Ones
Awards (based upon my brief research):
Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Historical Fiction & for Debut Goodreads Author (2017)
My Overall Rating:
4.5 – Though this book took me longer to read, making me miss my weekly blog post, that had nothing to do with the content of the book. It was one I could have devoured had I had more time and mental energy to commit to it.
I’ve read countless WWII stories, but what was fascinating about the Kurc family was: 1. We Were the Lucky Ones is their true story, and 2. they all took such different methods to survive. Hunter, a descendent of the Kurc family, did a phenomenal job of weaving the stories of her ancestors together, explaining the intricacies of Jewish survival in a time when not many Jews were surviving. I can only imagine the countless number of hours she put into research to make this novel happen – and then to have written it so well is just incredible.
My heart hurts for the Kurc family. Facing a genocide should never have to be in a family history. But I am grateful that their story will not go unheard.