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The winter orphans
2022
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In 1942, Jewish refugees Ella Rosenthal and her little sister, Hanni, find a safe haven in a derelict castle overseen by the Swiss Red Cross, but when Germany invades southern France, they must embark on a journey that, if successful, could change the course of their lives and grant them a future. Original. - (Baker & Taylor)

"A poignant and ultimately triumphant novel based on the incredible true story of children who braved the formidable danger of guarded wintry mountain passes in France to escape the Nazis. Southern France, 1942 In a remote corner of France, Jewish refugee Ella Rosenthal has finally found a safe haven. It has been three years since she and her little sister, Hanni, left their parents to flee Nazi Germany, and they have been pursued and adrift in the chaos of war ever since. Now, they shelter among a hundred other young refugees in a derelict castle overseen by the Swiss Red Cross. Swiss volunteers Rèosli Nèaf and Anne-Marie Piguet uphold a common mission: to protect children in peril. Rèosli, a stubborn and resourceful nurse, directs the colony of Chãateau de la Hille, and she has created a thriving community against all odds. Anne-Marie, raised by Swiss foresters, becomes both caretaker and friend to the children, and she vows to do whatever is necessary to keep them safe. However, when Germany invades southern France, safeguarding Jewish refugees becomes impossible. Chãateau de la Hille faces unrelenting danger, and Rèosli and Anne-Marie realize that the only way to protect the eldest of their charges is to smuggle them out of France. Relying on Rèosli's fierce will and Anne-Marie's knowledge of secret mountain paths, they plot escape routes through vast Nazi-occupied territory to the distant border. Amid staggering risk, Ella and Hanni embark on a journey that, if successful, could change the course oftheir lives and grant them a future"-- - (Baker & Taylor)

A poignant and ultimately triumphant novel based on the incredible true story of children who braved the formidable danger of guarded, wintry mountain passes in France to escape the Nazis, from the acclaimed author of Courage, My Love.

Southern France, 1942

In a remote corner of France, Jewish refugee Ella Rosenthal has finally found a safe haven. It has been three years since she and her little sister, Hanni, left their parents to flee Nazi Germany, and they have been pursued and adrift in the chaos of war ever since. Now, they shelter among one hundred other young refugees in a derelict castle overseen by the Swiss Red Cross.
 
Swiss volunteers Rösli Näf and Anne-Marie Piguet uphold a common mission: to protect children in peril. Rösli, a stubborn and resourceful nurse, directs the colony of Château de la Hille, and has created a thriving community against all odds. Anne-Marie, raised by Swiss foresters, becomes both caretaker and friend to the children, and she vows to do whatever is necessary to keep them safe.
 
However, when Germany invades southern France, safeguarding Jewish refugees becomes impossible. Château de la Hille faces unrelenting danger, and Rösli and Anne-Marie realize that the only way to protect the eldest of their charges is to smuggle them out of France. Relying on Rösli's fierce will and Anne-Marie's knowledge of secret mountain paths, they plot escape routes through vast Nazi-occupied territory to the distant border. Amid staggering risk, Ella and Hanni embark on a journey that, if successful, could change the course of their lives and grant them a future. - (Penguin Putnam)

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Reviews Via Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly Reviews

Beck (Courage, My Love) delivers a bittersweet tale inspired by two women who helped rescue Jewish refugee children from the Nazis and the French police. In 1942, Swiss nurse Rösli Näf, 31, is in charge of 100 Jewish children sheltered by the Swiss Red Cross in unoccupied southern France. Their repurposed castle feels safe enough, until the police stage a midnight raid and send 44 of the refugee children to an internment camp. Aware that when the camp fills up, prisoners will be sent on cattle cars to Germany, Rösli boldly pushes her way into the camp and stays until she gets her children released. Since the oldest children are still being targeted for deportation, a hiding place is established in the castle's cellar, and, with the help of forrester Anne-Marie Piguet, Rösli plots escape routes to Switzerland and Spain through heavily patrolled, snow-covered woods. Some missions fail and the children sneak back to the castle, though one botched attempt has devastating consequences. With Ella Rosenthal, 18, and her spirited sister, Hanni, eight, Beck offers credible glimpses of the day-to-day lives of the refugees in her redemptive, uplifting story of heroism. This is a solid pick for fans of WWII fiction who are looking for something a little different. Agent: Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary. (Sept.)

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