In this literary novel inspired by the events of World War II and one of its heroines, we get to know three young, strong-minded and determined women whose lives, though continents apart, are destined to come together. Hitler's Army has invaded Poland and has its sights on France, forever changing the lives of these three.
We are first introduced to Caroline Ferriday, a New York socialite with her hands full at her post at the French consulate and a new love on the horizon. We then meet Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager whose youthful, carefree days disappear as she pursues her role as a courier for the underground resistance movement. In a tense atmosphere of watchful eyes and suspecting neighbors, one false move can have dire consequences. Then we meet Herta Oberheuser, a young German doctor who responds to an ad for a government medical position. With the hope that this becomes her ticket to a life more exciting, she finds herself confined to the male-dominated underground world of Nazi secrets and power.
The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the only all-female concentration camp. Their stories cross continents—from New York to Paris, Germany, and Poland—as Caroline and Kasia strive to bring justice to those whom history has forgotten.
I'll admit to only being a little more than halfway through Lilac Girls, and while I can't wait to finish it, there's a part of me who wants to slow down and savor it. A great read, the story and the characters will live with me for a long time.