Overview - Sylvie Rosenberg escaped the holocaust--but can she escape the past? Angela Martino is haunted by events from her childhood and struggles to resolve her guilt. Can these two women from different generations reconcile their own turmoil--or pay the price of an even greater loss? Read more...
More About Rembrandt's Shadow by Janet Lee Berg
Sylvie Rosenberg escaped the holocaust--but can she escape the past? Angela Martino is haunted by events from her childhood and struggles to resolve her guilt. Can these two women from different generations reconcile their own turmoil--or pay the price of an even greater loss?
October 20, 1942. Benjamin Katz and his frightened family stand at the train station in occupied Holland, unsure if they would be taken to their freedom--or the death camp. Sylvie, his granddaughter, who was six years old at the time, would later recall the madness as they wondered if their desperate last minute escape would work. When the German officer received the order to allow the escape he said, "I would have much rather been given the order to kill all of you."
Their entire art collection had long made them a prime target of Adolf Hitler and his greedy henchmen. Now they had one big trade--a Rembrandt in exchange for twenty-five lives.
Based on a true story, Rembrandt's Shadow
is the story of two women from different generations--each with their own distinct horrific memories--who find themselves at odds when forced to confront the here and now.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
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Sylvie Beckman, the daughter of highly esteemed Dutch art dealer Josef Rosenberg, always felt her dad loved his art more than her until the day she learned he traded a Rembrandt to save her from the Nazis. Used to an extravagant lifestyle, Sylvie’s life of comfort all changed drastically in WWII even though her family was considered “protected” due to the valuable painting. Forty years after the war, Sylvie is living in New York when her son, Michael, decides to enlist in the military, leaving to fight in the Vietnam War in part to escape Sylvie’s demanding ways. Michael’s girlfriend, Angela Martino, receives an unexpected call from Sylvie when Michael begins to write about the unresolved family past and Sylvie’s distaste for Angela. Wishing to reconcile with her son, Sylvie takes it upon herself to explain her past to Angela, divulging the truth behind the magnificent painting that saved her life and made her complicit in the tragedies of war. Love transcending dark times and the importance of remembering the past are Berg’s (Glitz of the Hamptons) primary concerns, and the plot suffers without more to drive the action. The abrupt transitions between characters and time frames, as well as some overdetailing, make the story difficult to follow, but readers will find an affecting depiction of the horrors of the Dutch Holocaust and the effects of family secrets that can linger for generations. (Sept.)