My Enemy's Cradle by Sara Young
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pages: 360 (paperback)
"I am grateful you are not here," Cyrla's Jewish father last wrote from Poland. He had sent her to Holland for safekeeping with relatives, but now that country too has been overrun by the Nazis. In a rush, she takes refuge in one of the Lebensborn -- maternity homes for girls carrying German babies. But can she escape before her real identity is discovered? And will her love keep her safe when danger surrounds her? As Cyrla travels to the other side of war and through the heartbreak of survival, My Enemy's Cradle becomes a love song to kinship, an elegy for the women we have lost, and a lullaby for the children we must save.
When someone slips a note under the door of the home of Cyrla's Dutch relatives, Cyrla realizes she is no longer safe in WWII Europe. Her father thought Cyrla--who is half-Jewish--would be safe with her mother's blond hair. However, Cyrla soon needs a plan C. When cousin Annika, whom Cyrla closely resembles, becomes pregnant by a German soldier, Annika's father enrolls her into Lebensborn, A birthing center for Aryan children. Cyrla assumes her cousin's identity and plans to live in the German Lebensborn until rescued. There she experiences new emotional horrors that only her heart and strength can get her through.
This was a wonderful book. I had never heard of the Lebensborn homes and found this new piece of history to be very interesting, although quite disturbing. This is another example of the difficult choices that one must go through during difficult times and in the name of survival. The book was not depressing but was rather upbeat and hopeful. The only thing keeping the book from an awesome rating is the ending. I don't want to spoil anything but it did take an abrupt turn that I was not expecting and found a tad disappointing.