The author’s previous novel, The Tattooist Of Auschwitz, cleverly fused an appalling true story with a fictional structure. Cilka’s Journey does the same.
At Auschwitz, the beautiful Cilka was noticed by the Commandant and given special status. After liberation, she is charged as a collaborator and sent by the Russians to a Siberian prison camp...
The novel is based on the testimony of Lale Sokolov, the Auschwitz tattooist, who called Cilka ‘the bravest person I ever met’.
"One Booker shortlist later, Galley Beggar were proved correct. Ellmann’s novel isn’t perfect, and it may not take the prize, but in a world where Ian McEwan is still at large, something introspective and richly painted is a tonic for us all...."
— The Daily Telegraph
4.25 out of 5