My Review of “ISAAC” by Robert Karmon

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GOODREADS BLURB

Isaac

4.6  ·  Rating details ·  5 Ratings  ·  3 Reviews
Fiction. Jewish Studies. On the night of November 6th, 1941, the life of Isaac Gochman, a 16 year old Polish Jew, changes tragically and profoundly. Over 20,000 Jews from Rovno, Poland are marched into the Sosenki Forest by the Nazis, stripped and shot to death, then buried in an endless, unmarked ravine. All of Isaac’s family and friends die in the massacre. But Isaac miraculously survives the slaughter, and so begins his incredible and harrowing journey through the Polish forest, facing unimaginable hardships and the constant threat of death from the Nazis and their sympathizers.

To save himself, he adopts a new identity, Sergei, a Russian Christian, and joins the Russian Partisan Brigade, to become a demolition “miracle man.” As a Partisan, he falls passionately in love for the first time in his young life with Ducia, a Russian Nurse.

Near the end of the war, with Ducia tragically gone forever, he turns his back on his homeland, heroically saves the lives of American soldiers, and finds a new home in America.

Isaac is a true coming-of-age story of miraculous survival, courage and love.

“Isaac, based on a true story, follows the epic journey of young boy from near-death to ultimate triumph as a man. It is as harrowing as The Revenant. In parable- like prose, it captures Isaac’s miraculous survival of the Nazi massacre of his family and his escape alone into a vast, nightmarish European Forest. After being saved by his friend, Pietka, a gentile from near his village, he joins the Russian Partisans and falls in love with Ducia, a Russian Partisan Nurse. I was immediately drawn into the plight of this brave young man as he learns how love and friendship can overcome the memories of hatred, discrimination, and terrible loss. This is a masterful coming-of-age novel amid the horrors and passions of war.”–Dick Allen

“Isaac narrates the story of a young Jew from Rovno whose wartime survival among partisan fighters in the forests of eastern Europe is grippingly told from first page to last. For their sheer terror, the descriptions of Isaac’s ordeals match those in Jerzy Kosinski’s The Painted Bird and some of Aharon Appelfeld’s fiction. Readers drawn to tales of human resiliency against all odds will find this a compelling novel.”–Alvin H. Rosenfeld (less)

Paperback
Expected publication: December 1st 2017 by Pleasure Boat Studio
ISBN
MY REVIEW OF “ISAAC” by Robert Karmon
 “Isaac” by Robert Karmon is based on a true story of a young man as he grows into manhood at a terrible time in history. The genres of this story are Historical Fiction, and Fiction. This is based on the life of Isaac Gochman.  The timeline of the story is from 1941, during World War 11 and after the war. The story starts in Rovno, Poland and  is mostly in the  European forests, and not far from Russia. This is a story written about the time during the Holocaust.
The  character are complex and complicated and trying to survive in a war. Robert Karmon  weaves his story around a 16 year old Isaac, as he is coming of age. Unfortunately the Germans invade Rovno, and tell the Jewish people they have to leave with them for their safety.  The Germans walk the Jewish people to trenches two miles away, and start shooting them. Isaac is witness to the bravery of some people, and unfortunately the deaths of his whole family and community. Isaac is shot,  but survives .
The author describes his dangerous and treacherous journey, and the unusual cast of characters he meets in his attempts to survive. To keep his Jewish identity secret , he becomes Sergei. He joins different groups fighting for survival. Isaac also discovers his first love.
The author discusses the devastation and loss of a tragic war. He also talks about friendship, loyalty, hope and love. I would recommend this novel to those readers that are drawn to this period in history. I received an ARC of this novel for my honest review.

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