Nine Love Letters by Gerald Jacobs
A debut novel based on true events that cover more than a century and encompass the horrors of the Holocaust all within 256 pages is quite an achievement but this is exactly what Gerald Jacobs has achieved in the deeply moving story of what is two families and letters of love spanning generations is put together and weaved so beautifully in Nine Love Letters.
The real beauty of Nine Love Letters is the writing of Gerald Jacobs and is quiet and something unique, he goes about telling the story of his characters and their quiet ordinary lives with one thing in common and that is just trying to escape the appalling way that some decided that because they are Jewish that they would be persecuted and murdered because of ideology. A lesson that we all need to take on board in these current troubled times we live in.
The stories that connect the people involved span time from the early 1940’s as two separate families the Weisz and Haroun from Budapest and Iraq and the horrors become real and the persecution of Jewish people begins by fascists. Following the war, with the survivors from Bergen-Belsen and Auschwitz find themselves in a post war London now trying to pick up the pieces of lives and horrific memories. Two families now trying to adapt to lives shattered by war in London. As much as this is based around the horrors of the Holocaust this is a story of hope and forgiveness even after what some have gone through and witnessed. It is a shining light to what humanity is capable of. Love is after all capable of healing after so much pain and sadness and through the pages of Nine Love Letters this is the message that endures.
Thank you to Grace Pilkington for the advanced review copy.
Nine Love Letters by Gerald Jacobs is published by Quartet Books and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.