Insane | BookishFirst

Insane

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Cilka's Journey by Heather Morris shocked me right from the start, I could not fathom before reading this book the utter reality people imprisoned during the Holocaust actually experienced. Morris styled the book to read like a work of fiction but it was, however, inspired by real events. Morris captured the life of a girl named Cilka, who after world war 2, was accused of being a spy for the Germans and sent to a Siberian prison camp for a sentence of 15 years. She slept with the enemy in order to live, while many of her friends and family died around her and it broke Cilka into two. Cilka knew many languages from her time in Auschwitz-Birkenau and was picked to work in the prison hospital, while her bunkmates had to mine daily. I enjoyed reading the everydayness and how she had to endure much just to live to the next day.
Cilka was resilient in every situation thrown at her, she was the epitome of how it was to be human. Her friends grew to understand just how selfless Cilka was because she placed the needs of others before her own. The writing kinda threw me in for a loop at times because it felt exaggerated and took me out of the book sometimes, so that is why I didn't rate it five stars. The vividness in the setting was strikingly stark and added a degree of depression to Cilka's experience in Siberia. I enjoyed the book and felt grossed out at the right parts because of the gruesomeness Morris conveyed in her writing. Morris surprisingly took me to the mid 20th century and made me feel what Cilka was experiencing in detail and I can say that it was a journey filled with curves but a journey that ended right where it needed to be.