A Jewish woman falls in love with a German soldier amid the Nazi occupation of Jersey.
In her debut novel, The Girl from the Channel Islands, author Jenny Lecoat skillfully weaves the hardship of war, the power of resistance, and the strength of forbidden love into an intimate story of survival.
When the Nazis occupy the Channel Islands in 1940, transplanted Austrian Hedy Bercu can’t imagine what’s in store for the people who live there. Except for one friend, she is alone on Jersey. Hired as a nanny by a family that’s since fled, Hedy is terrified now that the Germans have commandeered her part of the British Isles. That she is Jewish makes her situation even more dire.
Without a job, Hedy is on the brink of starvation when she reluctantly applies for work at Nazi headquarters as an interpreter. It’s unusual for them to hire a Jew, but desperate for German/English interpreters, they do. To survive, Hedy must work for the enemy. To mollify her subsequent guilt, she sabotages the Germans by stealing petrol coupons and giving them to a local doctor to use for transporting the sick:
Read more of my review at Washington Independent Review of Books.