Book Review Of “The World That We Knew” By Alice Hoffman @simonschuster @SimonBooks @ahoffmanwriter

In Berlin, at the time when the world changed, Hanni Kohn knows she must send her twelve-year-old daughter away to save her from the Nazi regime. She finds her way to a renowned rabbi, but it’s his daughter, Ettie, who offers hope of salvation when she creates a mystical Jewish creature, a rare and unusual golem, who is sworn to protect Lea. Once Ava is brought to life, she and Lea and Ettie become eternally entwined, their paths fated to cross, their fortunes linked.

Lea and Ava travel from Paris, where Lea meets her soulmate, to a convent in western France known for its silver roses; from a school in a mountaintop village where three thousand Jews were saved. Meanwhile, Ettie is in hiding, waiting to become the fighter she’s destined to be.

What does it mean to lose your mother? How much can one person sacrifice for love? In a world where evil can be found at every turn, we meet remarkable characters that take us on a stunning journey of loss and resistance, the fantastical and the mortal, in a place where all roads lead past the Angel of Death and love is never ending. 

Thank you Edelweiss, and Simon & Schuster for gifting me an E-ARC in exchange of an honest review. All opinions are my own.

I rate this book a 3.5 out of 5 Stars.

This is my first Alice Hoffman book, and after seeing her last book (RULES OF MAGIC) blow up on Instagram, I definitely wanted to be one of the first people to read her new book! I did not want to suffer from FOMO again.

I was very pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this book. Magical Realism is a Genre that I have struggled to enjoy before. However, I love pretty much all Historical Fiction, so combining those two Genres I was more than intrigued.

I liked the pacing in this book, it was descriptive, and information rich, but it also read extremely fast, especially for a book of this size. I have read quite a few Nazi heavy books. And every single one has pulled at my heartstrings, and I cannot fathom what Jewish people went through. While this book touches a lot on that, it also is a very heartfelt coming of age story. With a Golem thrown in there to protect Lea, from everything. Some parts of this book were a bit too out there for me to really understand and grasp. But again that’s because I don’t have a lot of reading experience with Magical Realism.

I will also say, keep kleenex handy because there are some spots in this book that are going to cause your eyes to leak a bit. Overall for my first Hoffman book, I was pleasantly surprised, and I have already recommended it to my fellow Blogging and Bookstagram friends who are already Hoffman fans!! It really does make you ask yourself, “What Would You Do For Love?”

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