engaging story about an interesting woman

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We first met Cilka in The Tattooist of Auschwitz. When we met her she was a teenager in Auschwitz-Birkenau. She was sent to the camp as a 16 year old girl and was 18 when the camp was liberated. Cilka suffered through and survived Birkenau only to be sent to a Siberian prison-work camp for having "collaborated" with (aka been raped by) the enemy.

Cilka was an interesting side character in The Tattooist of Auschwitz and I'm so glad Heather Morris chose to tell us more of her story in Cilka's Journey. The author makes it clear that this is a story of fiction that is based off of a real person. It is not meant to be taken as a nonfiction account, but as fiction with real life basis. It is written in the spirit of remembrance of what some women suffered through during the Holocaust and beyond. It is a reminder that women had very gender specific issues that they had to deal with and that the liberation did not always end their suffering.

This book can be read as a standalone, as there are flashbacks to her time in Birkenau. I think I enjoyed this book even more than the first, but ToA is worth a read as well and I would start with that one. These books are very well-written and engaging.

This book has many potential triggers. It includes a variety of abuses inflicted upon people. However, it is also a beautiful story of how people can survive against all odds and build relationships and care for each other in the worst of times.

Definitely worth a read. 4.5★