"Send for Me," | Reviewed by Joan Kletzker
“Send for Me,” by Loren Fox, is mesmerizing historical fiction at its best.
The book easily flows back and forth from current time to Germany at the beginning of World War II. The story focuses on four generations of women: Klara, Annelise, Ruthie and Clare. Klara is the mother of Annelise and Annelise gives birth to Ruthie. Clare is Ruthie’s daughter.
Annelise, her husband Walter and their baby, Ruthie, flee Germany just in time. They go to Milwaukee where distant relatives sponsor them in the United States. The couple works with determination and diligence to get Klara and her husband, Julius, out of Europe. But they are too late.
The characters and their families lead ordinary lives, but always have to deal with the shadow of war and the trauma it brings. The bond shared by mothers, daughters, and home are the threads that hold the story together.
Annelise dies in old age and Clare discovers letters Klara sent to Annelise from Germany. The desperation and despair Klara must have been feeling become palpable as the letters pile up. Clare reaches a depth of maturity realizing the sacrifices her great- grandparents, grandparents and parents made in their lives. This affects decisions she makes in the end.
The author writes with precision capturing varied emotions and thoughts of the
characters. The story is somewhat biographical because the author did find her great grandmother’s letters from Germany and incorporated them into the book. Sometimes, I get tired of reading about World War II, but then a book like this comes along and I gain a new perspective.
Good can and does come from terrible situations. This book is proof of that.