History is generally not something I'm interested in reading. Give me a good fiction story, something I can escape into, and I'll devour the book in a day. So it was with some trepidation that I started to read Camp Letters: 1942-1945 because after all, this was not only history, it was also just a series of letter. However, after the first few pages, I was hooked!
The simple style of Alice's writing, the honesty, determination, and sheer guts of this woman's narrative captured in her nearly daily correspondence with her husband, Bruno, in the Alien camps, made me laugh, cry, and shake my head in amazement at Alice's tenacity. She had the ability to find joy in her family, to do the work of many men to keep her business alive, and to continue to love and honor her husband, all in a time when her country and everyone around her is struggling just to survive. The emotions invoked by this book ranged from the depths of despair that all was lost and that things will never get better, to the glowing warmth and strength of family, and finally that faith, love, and hope will conquer all.
As you read through the letters, the notes, and view the photos included in this collection, it is evident that Mr. Nightingale assembled this book as a labor of love for his family and to preserve this history. I am grateful that he chose to share it with the rest of us.