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Eisele, Terry & Riddle, Jonathon – With Only Five Plums Book 2: This Dark Age



With Only Five Plums Book 2: This Dark Age

This is the second of three volumes, so you might want to at least read the review for the first volume before reading this. Or, ideally, read the actual first volume. Anyway, this time around Anna tells the tale of her life immediately after getting separated from her baby, completely unsure about what has happened to the rest of her family. She mentions that she probably wouldn’t have had the strength to go on if she had known what happened to them at this point, so I can once again assume that it’s not going to end well for them. She talks about the experience on the train, packed in like cattle and unsure of where they were going and what would happen to them when they got there, and of how the older women would sometimes tell stories to pass the time. They eventually get to the concentration camp of Ravensbruck, and she again goes into excruciating detail as to what happened to her when she arrived. This volume actually tells most of the story of the war, as we see her trying to survive her three years in this camp, the various sections of the camp and how people would change when (or if) they came back from them, and her eventual march to an unknown location and fate. There’s even her moment at the end when a decent fictional story would have the heart to end on a happy note… but this, by and large, is not fictional. I still have the third volume yet to go, which contains the details of what happened to Anna’s tiny home town and her family, but I’m going to have to wait a few weeks to work up the nerve to go back into this world. No matter how many times I see them it’s always profoundly depressing to read the details of this era, as it’s unpleasant to think about just how close to savagery humanity is at any given moment and how little it takes to push us over that edge. Not that I’m saying that everybody would have behaved like the Germans in WWII, but there have been more than enough other atrocities committed in the years since that’s it’s clearly not that big of a leap for humans to make. Terry Eisele and Jonathan Riddle do a remarkable job of telling this story, as they’re perfectly content to let Anna’s words speak for themselves while still painting an uncomfortably vivid picture of exactly what she went through. This deserves to be seen by as many people as possible, so please give it a look. $10