With a foreword by Cynthia Ozick, this semiautobiographical novel of a Jewish girl forced away from home in the face of Nazi persecution is an extraordinary tale of fortitude and survival.
On a December night in 1938, a 10-year-old girl named Lore is put on the Kinder transport, a train carrying hundreds of Jewish children out of Austria to safety from Hitler's increasingly alarming oppression. Temporarily housed at the Dover Court Camp on England's east coast, Lore will find herself living in other people's houses for the next seven years: the Orthodox Levines, the Hoopers, the working-class Grimsleys, and the wealthy Miss Douglas and Mrs. Dillon.
Charged with the task of asking "the English people" to get her parents out of Austria, Lore discovers in herself an impassioned writer. In letters to potential sponsors, she details the horrors happening back at home; in those to her parents, she notes the mannerisms and reactions of the new families around her as she valiantly tries to master their language. And the closer the world comes to a new war, the more resolute Lore becomes to survive.
As powerful now as when it was first released 50 years ago, Other People's Houses is a poignant tale about the creation of a new life in the face of hopelessness and fear - a hallmark of the postwar immigration experience.