In her New York home, 80-year-old Elise Duval receives unexpected visitors bearing old letters written in German by her mother when the Nazis occupied France. Elise has spent decades trying to forget who she is and what she did in the life lived before she reached the age of 12 and arrived in New York from France.
As memories now assail her, she comes to grips with and confesses to her daughter the choices she made in the war, though she was just a child at the time and couldn’t have understood the repercussions of her decisions. She also gains a deeper understanding of all that was done by others to preserve her life.
Author Armando Lucas Correa’s novel for adults weaves together a fictional narrative against the background of World War II—the German occupation of France; the role of French collaborators; the Resistance movement; book burnings; the massacre at Oradour-sur-Glane, France; and the refusal of Cuba, the United States, and Canada to allow Jewish refugees on board the MS St. Louis to disembark on their shores, forcing them to return to Europe. The Daughter's Tale is a complex and satisfying read that honors the love, bravery, and conviction of many who helped children escape Hitler’s tyranny.