Sarah's Key Summary

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The story is written in the perspective of ten year old Sarah Starzynski, and present day American journalist, Julia Jarmond. During 1942 in Paris, Sarah Starzynski was taken with her parents by the French police who were going door to door, to round up Jewish families. Sarah, who was desperate to protect her three year old brother, Michel, hides in him in their secret hiding place, and locks him up in a cupboard where she thought he would be safe. Still innocent, Sarah promises to come back for him as soon as they are released, but little did she know, she wasn’t coming back. Sixty years later, Sarah’s tragic story intertwines with that of middle aged reporter, Julia. Sarah’s Key follows Julia’s investigation into the Vel’ d’Hiv Roundup where Jewish families where arrested and taken to a bicycle stadium and then shipped to Auschwitz. In her research, Julia stumbles onto a trail of hidden secrets, secrets that will change the life of her and many others that link to Sarah Starzynski. During the middle of the night on July 16th, Sarah who refused let the French police harm her little brother Michel, locks him in their hiding place, a secret cabinet in their room. She tells him she would come back for him and is then taken away with her parents in local street cars to an old bicycle stadium. All the Jewish families were rounded up in the old bicycle stadium but they did not know that it was just a temporary place for them to stay until they are sent to death camps. The Sarah and the other Jews stayed there for several days without food or water. After days of having to live in a stadium, families are transferred to the Beaune-la-Rolande, a transit deportation detention camp. Men and Women were first to be deported from Auschwitz; Sarah and the rest of the children were cruelly separated from their mother’s by the French police. Alone, and without their parents,

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