They join their hands and jump down into the gorge a second before the shots are fired. Without realizing it, their lives as well as their hands are now joined forever.
Two little girls meet in a most unusual and tragic setting. Kiev… at the time of the Holocaust… The Jews of the city are led to a ravine where they are stripped naked, lined up on the edge and shot.
Two little girls miraculously survive the massacre. They join their hands and jump down into the gorge a second before the shots are fired. Without realizing it, their lives as well as their hands are now joined forever. A simple Ukrainian man, a righteous gentile, saves them and takes them home to be looked after by his son. A second miracle happens when both girls find members of their family. They live in different households, with different life goals, but their bond stays strong.
Beautiful Manya and ugly-duckling, but brilliant Raya become blood sisters from the moment their grandmothers’ blood splashed over their naked bodies, and as they crawled over the dead and dying people in the ravine that night, covered in the blood of the Jewish people.
After the war, Manya’s childhood was difficult. She lived with an anti-Semitic, alcoholic father. Raya was surrounded by a loving and intelligent family.
As adults, their luck changed. Manya married a man she loved, and went into profession she wanted. Raya spent years overcoming hurdles to achieve these simple goals.
Then emigration started. One sister moved to Israel, another to Canada. Would their friendship survive the distance? How could they help each other now an ocean
separated them? Would they still be holding hands when they reached the golden years?
What the readers say
"Absolutely absorbing! The richness, insight and sympathy Elena creates in her characters kept me reading almost non-stop!"