Whoever Saves a Life Saves the World
Original title: Qui sauve une vie sauve le monde
A powerfully poignant novel that hauntingly evokes the share of secrets simmering in every family.
Raphaëlle, in her 30s, is in mourning. Her grandmother, Elisabeth, whom she was very close to, is being buried today. But she doesn’t recognize many of the people in the surprisingly large crowd that has gathered in the church. A woman she has never met delivers a eulogy, which paints a portrait of the deceased that Raphaëlle finds unsettling. Could it be that she never really knew Elisabeth? After the funeral, the woman who spoke hands Raphaëlle her grandmother’s diary from World War II… What secrets does it contain? Could they still be echoing in her life today?
Diary, 1940: Elisabeth, a.k.a. Lisette, is 18. Her family has fled to the castle they own on the Vivarais-Lignon plateau in the Haute-Loire. Separated from their father, Lisette and her sister, Gisèle, are coddled by their grandmother, the cook, Titine, and a couple of farmers on the grounds. But reality still manages to catch up with them. Lisette is going to have to grow up, fast.
But Elisabeth’s diary stops before the end, so Raphaëlle decides to investigate, to try to answer some of the questions left hanging. What she learns will change all of their lives.
- In the vein of Sarah’s Key (Elle s’appelait Sarah) by Tatiana de Rosnay and A Secret (Un secret) by Philippe Grimbert.