on June 21, 2010
Gina Roitman, a communications expert, must have realized what a challenge she set for herself - to convey the conflicting feelings of a sensitive Jewish girl, raised in the boiling pot which is Montreal Quebec by parents who were Holocaust survivors. Each chapter in the book could be considered an individual short story, but their full impact can only be realized by reading the book as a whole. The reader can only imagine the pressure on a child to cope with three competing influences in her life - the psychic inheritance of parental nightmares; the inhabitant of a society struggling to re-identify itself as the Quebec Quiet Revolution is gestating, and the normal but critical issues and choices which any child encounters when striving to attain adulthood.
Riotman skillfully interweaves these pulls, resulting in the reader witnessing the growth of a beautiful young child into an independent young woman detemined to fashion her unique identity and safeguard it against those who would try to shape her into someone she is not.
These stories are set in locales, with which the author is obviously familiar, from around the world - Europe, Canada, Israel. The reader actually lives the experiences of the protagonist with her! And the book holds us to the end, as we wait to see if she can survive both the benign and harmful attempts to control her life.