Inspired by the real-life escape of thousands of Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Europe on the Kindertransport trains to London, the new novel from the author of The Oceans Between UsGill Thompson. For readers of The Tattooist of Auschwitz Heather Morris, The Choice Edith Eger and Lilac Girls Martha Hall Kelly.
Prague 1939. Young mother Eva has a secret from her past. When the Nazis invade, Eva knows the only way to keep her daughter Miriam safe is to send her away – even if it means never seeing her again. But when Eva is taken to a concentration camp, her secret is at risk of being exposed.
In London, Pamela volunteers to help find places for the Jewish children arrived from Europe. Befriending one unclaimed little girl, Pamela brings her home. It is only when her young son enlists in the RAF that Pamela realises how easily her own world could come crashing down.
Books like this one are so important to read. It may be fiction but sadly the camps and and the horrific treatment of human beings, is very real. It’s a reminder of what people went through and how we should never let history repeat itself.
Pamela and Eva have very different lives. What they do have in common, is the love for their children. Eva, to be able to send her child to a strange country knowing no one, was incredibly brave. Pamela on the other hand, has just as much cause for concern when her son Will enlists with the RAF. My heart went out to both women.
Whilst the story is set during war time, we do get to see a certain part of camp life and the horrific treatment to Jewish people. The story though focuses more on what life is like outside it. For Miriam a young girl, living with strangers and adapting to life without her family. For Pamela, opening her home to a Jewish child and wanting to do more in the war effort.
I loved how music for Eva, helped with her time in the camps as well as for many other prisoners. In such a dire environment, it gave them comfort and hope. Parts of the story do make for some uncomfortable reading due to the nature of the story but overall it gives hope and I loved seeing people coming together and the relationships and bonds that are formed.
The Child On Platfrom One is an inspirational, harrowing and emotional read. My heart went out to the characters in this novel and I thought I had held my emotions quite well through out but the epilogue literally broke me. The impact of what the characters had been through, hit me full force at this moment whilst I refelected on all I had read. A powerful and moving novel.
My thanks to Anne Cater, Headline Books and NetGalley for an advanced readers copy of this book. All opinions are my own and not biased in anyway.
The Child On Platform One is available to purchase from Amazon. (Please note that link used is an Amazon Affiliate link).
Gill Thompson is an English lecturer who completed an MA in Creative Writing at Chichester University. Her first novel, THE OCEANS BETWEEN US, tells the heart-breaking story of a mother and son separated by war and by continents, fighting their way back to each other. The first three chapters of THE OCEANS BETWEEN US were longlisted for the Mslexia novel award and the first page of her second work in progress has been selected to feature in Mslexia magazine. Gill lives with her family in West Sussex and teaches English to college students and hosts a creative writing blog.