February, while the shortest month of the year often seems like the longest. It is usually filled with snowy days, and overall nasty weather. If you are spending more time indoors and looking for some great books to read while sipping a hot cocoa and snuggling next to the fire, the Plum Tree is an inspiring read.
THE PLUM TREE by Ellen Marie Wiseman
In the vein of City of Women or Cold Mountain, THE PLUM TREE is an epic novel about the enduring hope of a young German woman during WWII as she struggles to survive poverty and Allied bombs, finds the courage to outwit SS officers, and tries to save the love of her life – a Jewish man. It’s a compelling novel written by a first-generation German American who puts a face on the countless destitute Germans who were victims of their government’s actions during World War II.
A deeply moving and masterfully written story of human resilience and enduring love, The Plum Tree follows a young German woman through the chaos of World War II and its aftermath.
“Bloom where you’re planted,” is the advice Christine Bölz receives from her beloved Oma. But seventeen-year-old domestic Christine knows there is a whole world waiting beyond her small German village. It’s a world she’s begun to glimpse through music, books—and through Isaac Bauerman, the cultured son of the wealthy Jewish family she works for.
Yet the future she and Isaac dream of sharing faces greater challenges than their difference in stations. In the fall of 1938, Germany is changing rapidly under Hitler’s regime. Anti-Jewish posters are everywhere, dissenting talk is silenced, and a new law forbids Christine from returning to her job—and from having any relationship with Isaac. In the months and years that follow, Christine will confront the Gestapo’s wrath and the horrors of Dachau, desperate to be with the man she loves, to survive—and finally, to speak out.
Set against the backdrop of the German homefront, this is an unforgettable novel of courage and resolve, of the inhumanity of war, and the heartbreak and hope left in its wake.
Advance Praise For Ellen Marie Wiseman’s The Plum Tree
“The Plum Tree is a touching story of heroism and loss, a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the power of love to transcend the most unthinkable circumstances. Deft storytelling and rich characters make this a highly memorable read and a worthy addition to the narratives of the Holocaust and Second World War.” –Pam Jenoff, author of The Ambassador’s Daughter
“A haunting and beautiful debut novel.” –Anna Jean Mayhew, author of The Dry Grass of August
“In The Plum Tree, Ellen Marie Wiseman boldly explores the complexities of the Holocaust. This novel is at times painful, but it is also a satisfying love story set against the backdrop of one of the most difficult times in human history.” –T. Greenwood, author of Two Rivers
Ellen Marie Wiseman was born and raised in Three Mile Bay, a tiny hamlet in Northern New York. A first generation American, Ellen has traveled frequently to visit her family in Germany, where she fell in love with the country’s history and culture. A mother of two, Ellen lives peacefully on the shores of Lake Ontario with her husband and three dogs.