The Opera Sisters by Marianne Monson



Based on the true story of the Cook sisters, who smuggled valuables out of 1930s Nazi Germany to finance a daring, secret operation to help Jews find hope for a new life in England

British sisters Ida and Louise Cook enjoy their quiet, unassuming lives in south London. Ida writes romance novels, and Louise works as a secretary. In the evenings, the sisters indulge in their shared love for opera, saving their money to buy records and attend performances throughout England and Europe, becoming well-known by both performers and fellow opera lovers.

But when Hitler seizes power in 1933, he begins targeting and persecuting German Jews, passing laws that restrict their rights and their lives. The sisters continue their trips to the German opera houses, but soon, Jewish members of the opera community covertly approach the sisters, worried that they will be stripped of their wealth and forced to leave their homes and the country. Danger looms on the horizon, threatening to spill across all of Europe’s borders.

Ida and Louise vow to help, but how can two ordinary working-class women with limited means make a difference?

Together with their beloved opera community, the sisters devise a plan to personally escort Jewish refugees from Germany to England. The success of the plan hinges on Ida and Louise’s ability to smuggle contraband jewelry and furs beneath the watchful eyes of the SS soldiers guarding various checkpoints. But how many trips can they make before someone blows a whistle? Or before the final curtain falls on Germany’s borders?

The Opera Sisters is a riveting and inspiring novel of two unlikely heroines whose courage and compassion gave hope to many Jews desperate to escape Nazi persecution.

In my opinion:

I'm a huge fan of WWII books and true stories so I was quite surprised that I wasn't into the Opera Sisters. The book cover is beautiful and I typically will know if I'll enjoy a book by the first page. Sometimes, I'll need to read a chapter or two before the story starts to be interesting. However, I had mixed feelings about the way the writer outlined the book. Instead of standard chapters, it was short stories that were hard to follow. And there were a lot of characters. With that being said, the story was definitely well researched and I learned quite a lot about the British sisters Ida and Louise Cook. I don't think I could have done all of the things that those amazing sisters did. They were true heroes. I'm sure this book is for certain audiences and I know some loved it but it wasn't the historical novel I was hoping for.

Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products or services for free in the hope that I would mention them on my blog and offer an honest review. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.


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