‘Choices: The True Story of One Family’s Daring Escape to Freedom’ by J.E. Laufer is a short, yet instantly compelling story. A little more than a decade after the horrific acts of the Holocaust have ravaged innocent families, young mother Kati and her husband, Adolf, come to the conclusion that in order to give their children the life they deserve, free of Communism, they must face their fears and leave the country they call home. As they make plans to escape Budapest, Hungary, they struggle with the very real dilemma of leaving those they love, unsure of whether they will ever see them again. This issue is coupled with their worry about whether or not they should give away the last of their money to a stranger whom they have no choice but to trust with their escape.
The author is the real-life daughter of the main characters. Having been only two years old at the time the book is set, she can only recount the stories she has heard about their harrowing journey to a new life. With the help of family and some kind people who set the trip in motion, Kati and Adolf, along with their children, Judit and Gyorgy, find that there are always those who want to help, despite the terrible discovery only a decade prior that there are plenty of people who would rather do anything but save others from harm.
With the Holocaust eating away at Kati, she determines that life will not end up the same way it did before, when she lost her entire family in the concentration camps. Chock full of emotion and searing memories that are made all the stronger knowing they are true, ‘Choices’ allows readers to share in the escape and feel as though they are there right alongside the family, hoping, wishing, wanting, and longing for what tomorrow will bring.
You can find ‘Choices’ by J.E. Laufer here.
*Review originally posted on YABooksCentral.com*