*I received this book from the publisher.*
Title: The Girl They Left Behind
Author: Roxanne Veletzos
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Synopsis from Goodreads:
On a freezing night in January 1941, a little Jewish girl is found on the steps of an apartment building in Bucharest. With Romania recently allied with the Nazis, the Jewish population is in grave danger, undergoing increasingly violent persecution. The girl is placed in an orphanage and eventually adopted by a wealthy childless couple who name her Natalia. Yet, as Natalia comes of age in a bleak and hopeless world, traces of her identity pierce the surface of her everyday life, leading gradually to a discovery that will change her destiny. When Natalia is suddenly offered a one-time chance at freedom, Victor is determined to help her escape, even if it means losing her. Natalia must make an agonizing decision: remain in Bucharest with her beloved adoptive parents and the man she has come to love, or seize the chance to finally live life on her own terms, and to confront the painful enigma of her past.
The Girl They Left Behind was a whirlwind of a novel. It deals with very difficult decades in Romania–the Nazi regime followed by the Soviet occupation. Natalia’s life is not an easy one. This novel, though heartbreaking, is so easy to read. Natalia is a character who jumps right off of the page and into reality, as do the other characters in this story. Her story is so vibrant and incredibly moving. Veletzos has written this historical world so beautifully. Time moves quickly, and so the story moves quickly. It is an easy, but very engaging read. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Natalia’s story. Any lover of historical fiction will enjoy this book. It’s the perfect novel to cozy up with next to the fire as we head into towards winter.