The County of Birches: Stories

Judith Kalman

Publisher: St. Martin’s

The County of Birches is a resonant collection of linked stories told from the perspective of a child of Holocaust survivors. Our narrator is a young girl without a country: Fleeing the vineyards outside of Budapest with her family in 1956, Dana Weisz finds herself first in London and then in a suburb of Montreal. Her parents, Sari and Gabor, both indelibly marked by the Holocaust that claimed most of their relatives, invoke a past that both enchants and terrifies their two children. Indeed, while many of the stories here are told directly from Dana’s point of view, many others belong to Dana’s mother and father, and are about a golden age before the war. Searching for her identity as a child of survivors and a Jew in a strange land, the stories will always be Dana’s one thread to her own beginning.

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