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The Polish Woman

Eva Mekler

98 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1882593995 / ISBN 13: 9781882593996
Published by Bridge Works, New York, 2007
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Author's 2nd novel. Signed and insribed by the author. " An austerely beautiful novel.unique.". Bookseller Inventory # 004715

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Polish Woman

Publisher: Bridge Works, New York

Publication Date: 2007

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Edition: First Edition, First Printing

About this title


The Polish Woman, set in New York and in Poland, is a gripping post-Holocaust story with a fresh, highly suspenseful mystery twist. An attractive 29-year-old Polish woman suddenly appears before a New York Jewish family in 1967, claiming to be the long-lost daughter of a recently deceased family member. He was a Holocaust survivor who had hidden a daughter with a Catholic farm family in Poland to try to save her from the Nazis. Is the woman who she claims to be, or a scam artist intent on inheriting the dead man's fortune, or something else? The search for the woman's true identity takes a young male member of the family across the ocean with her in a detective-story-like search to movingly peel back her past, like onion layers. This is a story that will entrance readers who relish suspense, drama, little explored aspects of the Holocaust, and the many threads of human character, from greed and fear to personal romantic attachment and motivation.

From the Inside Flap:

The Polish Woman, set in New York and in Poland, is the story of a search for the identity of an attractive young woman who appears to be a possible survivor of the Holocaust--or perhaps a cunning scam artist. When 29-year-old Karolina Staszek appears in the office of a New York Jewish lawyer, Philip Landau, in 1967, her hair wet from the cold December rain, she seems so helpless and sincere. Yet Philip does not believe her strange story--that she is the long-lost child that his Uncle Jake had paid a Catholic family to hide on its farm near Lublin, Poland, during the World War II Nazi occupation.

Jake survived the Holocaust, but believed his daughter had not. It seemed too farfetched to Philip that more than 20 years later and a month after Jake's death, she would show up, claiming she was now living in New York and by chance had read Jake's obituary and recognized his photo in the newspaper. Was she a scheming Pole who saw an opportunity to inherit Jake's fortune?

Even after the woman recalls the names of Jake's dead wife, Rachel, and the daughter, Chava, Philip retains his suspicions. The Landau family sends Karolina and Philip to Warsaw, Lublin and surrounding farm areas to search surviving records and interview residents who may remember the Landaus or the family that raised Karolina as their own, the Staszeks.

As they pursue blind leads and tantalizing but inconclusive ones--at archives, with old Lublin neighbors and with a priest and an elderly housekeeper at a church near the Staszeks' old farm--and as they encounter post-war Polish anti-semitism, Philip and Karolina are drawn to each other. Finally they locate a man who worked on a farm adjoining the Staszeks' and who, in a startling climax, recalls witnessing events that unravel the mystery of Jake's child--and set the course of Karolina's and Philip's love and lives.

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