Saving Amelie, set in Germany during World War II, is a riveting and thought-provoking historical novel that introduces us to Rachel Kramer. The daughter of an influential American eugenics researcher, Rachel agrees to accompany her father to Germany in 1939 one last time, but when she receives a mysterious note from an estranged childhood friend, she embarks on an unexpected journey, fraught with danger, that challenges everything she believes.
Written from the perspectives of a wide array of characters, from proud, spoilt Rachel to obsessive SS officer Gerhardt Schlick, daring American reporter Jason, humble woodcarver Friedrich, and Bavarian housewife Lea, Saving Amelie is both heart-wrenching and inspiring.
Giving insight into the roles of the Eugenics movement and Darwinian evolution in Hitler’s Third Reich, Saving Amelie emphasizes that we do not have to agree with someone to protect their life. Exploring themes such as forgiveness and grace, Saving Amelie reminds us that even in the midst of unconscionable evil such as the forced sterilizations, euthanasia, and human experimentation that occurred, there were brave men and women such as Corrie ten Boom, Irena Sendler, Hugh O’Flaherty, Bernhard Lichtenberg, and Dorothea Neff, who dared to resist corrupt leaders and obey God (Acts 5:29).
By incorporating real characters such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Dr. Josef Mengele, and Dr. Verschuer, Saving Amelie has a very genuine feel, while being extremely easy to read. Overall, I found Saving Amelie to be a powerful, yet enjoyable book. However, due to the discussion of eugenics, rape, and torture in Saving Amelie, I would recommend it for readers over the age of fourteen. I would give Saving Amelie an “A”.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Tyndale Blog Network program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 .