The Far Side of the Sky

The Far Side of the Sky

eBook - 2011
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On November 9, 1938-- Kristallnacht-- the Nazis carry outa shocking attack upon the Jewish citizens of Germanyand Austria. Franz Adler, a secular Austrian Jew and surgeon, is desperate to find safety for himself and his family, but, like others seeking to escape the Nazi threat, finds only closed doors at the embassies and consulates. When Franz learns that European Jews are able to travel without a visa to Shanghai, the cosmopolitan " Paris of the East," he and his family set off on a risky journey that will takethem to an unknown future halfway around the world.
Publisher: [Toronto, Ontario] :, HarperCollins Canada,, 2011
ISBN: 9781443402675
Characteristics: 1 online resource


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Mar 08, 2016

Bloodless, which is ironic given that the author is a doctor. The characters have almost no inner life, and really only serve as a series of attitudes or characteristics that move the plot along. The medical procedures in this book are described with more passion than the relationships. The narrator often talks in factoids, rather than finding a less obvious way of inserting the author's research about the period into the narrative. To be fair, the book moves along at a fair pace, which is merciful given its page length. It's hard to imagine wanting to read the remaining two books in this trilogy if they're as clumsily written as this one.

Dec 05, 2013

Very enjoyable. I have just started the sequel, hope it is as good if not better.

Nov 18, 2013

Very well written story about a part of WWII history I knew nothing about. His follow up book is next on my list.

Oct 06, 2013

for Book Club

Jul 06, 2013

The writing is somewhat stiff and formulaic, but curiousity about the fate of the Shanghai Jews kept me reading.

Mar 24, 2013

a very good book based on historical fact. One doesn't hear much about the German Jews in Shanghai and author built a well written story around it. I would recommend.

StratfordLibrary Mar 22, 2013

Blind Date With a Book Comment: "I enjoyed this historical novel thoroughly. This was a side of the 2nd World War that I had not heard of before. It was well-written; you could picture it all happening. I would definitely recommend it for both historical reading as well as a good story."

Feb 13, 2013

I really enjoyed this book - will recommend for my Book Club. Was unaware of the German Jew settlement in Shanghai

Feb 01, 2013

This is an exceptionally wonderful wonderful novel with great historical background written by a Cdn medical doctor. Doctors write great books I find! I wish reviewers would NOT relate the plot and spoil it for everyone else; they must lack sensitivity.

wendybird Oct 24, 2012

I thoroughly enjoyed this plot driven, interesting novel. "Far side" should appeal to a very wide range of readers, with its unique World War II setting (Shanghai), familiar themes (Nazis/antisemitism, love, human growth ) & well drawn characters -- no wonder it was chosen as an OLA (Adult reading) Evergreen Award nominee! I consider myself a bit of a World War II fiction & film junkie, and still, this story -- the flight of Jews & other persona non grata -- to Shanghai.

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Oct 06, 2013

On November 9, 1938--Kristallnacht--the Nazis unleash a night of terror across Germany that paves the way for Hitler's Final Solution. Meanwhile, the Japanese Imperial Army continues to rampage through China and tighten its stranglehold on Shanghai, a besieged and divided city that becomes the last haven for thousands of desperate European Jews. Dr. Franz Adler, an Austrian Jew and renowned surgeon, is swept up in the wave of anti-Semitic violence washing over Vienna and flees to China with his daughter. There, at a Shanghai refugee hospital, Franz meets an enigmatic nurse, Soon Yi Sunny Mah. The chemistry between them is intense and immediate, until Sunny's life is shattered when a drunken Japanese sailor attempts to rape her and murders her father. The danger escalates for Shanghai's Jewish refugee community as the Japanese ally themselves militarily with Germany and attack Pearl Harbor. Soon, the Japanese overrun the European enclaves within Shanghai. Facing starvation, disease and the threat of internment--or worse--Franz struggles to keep the refugee hospital open while protecting his own family and fights to outwit the Nazis and save the city's Jewish community from a terrible fate. The Far Side of the Skyfocuses on a short but extraordinary period of Chinese, Japanese and Jewish Second World War history, where cultures converged and heroic sacrifices were part of the everyday quest for survival.

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