historical fiction

Far to go by Alison Pick. It is all about survival

Discrimination and attacks reach Jews in Czechoslovakia. Bauers, an affluent Jewish family, realize that the only way to survive is to flee the country. Unfortunately, it is too late for Pavel and Anneliese to escape. Still, their six year-old son Pepik has a chance to get on Kindertransport to go to the United Kingdom, where he can find shelter until the danger is over. There is also Martha, Pepik’s governess, who has nobody in this world and treats Bauers like her own family.

Pavel, Anneliese and Martha are very well written characters. Pavel is a self- confident businessman who learned his entrepreneurship from his ftg[1]father. He worked hard for what he achieved and for long time is unable to believe that Jews really would be held inside the country against their will… like animals in the cage. Anneliese lives in her luxury world; she never experienced hardship of real life. She does not even take care of her son, who is closer to his governess rather than his own mother. However, this was her idea to put Pepik on Kindertransport; she wanted to protect him at any cost. At the end of the book, you will be surprise what other choice she makes to survive. The most interesting protagonist is Martha though. She comes from pathological family, never had anybody that she could rely on. That is why she makes bad choices regarding men. She attaches to Bauers like to her own family, but when they escape and leave her on her own she does terrible thing, which changes their lives forever…

And little Pepik, sweet and innocent boy…symbolizes every child put on Kindertransport. His future was determined by that terrifying experience. He was the only War survivor of Bauers family.

Many people would ask why Jews did not escape when they had a chance, why some of them were so stubborn to stay although danger was so huge. In fact, many of them had exit visa but they did not use it. Firstly, they did not expect that Hitler would put them to death camps… nobody would anticipate it. In Czechoslovakia Jews enjoyed decades of prosperity and peace and could not believe in Nazi’s extermination plans. Secondly, they were Germans, Czechs or Poles and why should they give up on their homelands and homes they built for many years. The last but not the least, for centuries Jews got used to living through various hardships and they always survived. When War started they thought that time would be the same.

The connection between narrator and the story is so astonishing and makes this book so special.

Cover of the book is amazing! Humble and meaningful, at the same time.

Far To Go seems innocent at first, but in fact it is very powerful book. There are two kinds of books: those that only entertain and those that teach. Far To Go teaches about history and human nature. I am so grateful that I had a chance to read it.

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