Although All That I Am by Anna Funder is a novel, it is based on the true story of four young Germans (Ruth, Dora, Hans, and Ernst Toller) who fled their country in order to keep raising the alarm about what was happening in their homeland as Adolf Hitler came to power. Ultimately, it is the story of how an entire world can close their eyes and ears to oppression and danger.
The book opens in 2001 in Australia, where Ruth is living out her days alone. As she faces the approaching end of her life, she is remembering the past more and more. When her doctor tells her she may be losing her sight, she ruminates:
I had very good eyes once. It is another thing to say what I saw. In my experience, it is entirely possible to watch something happen and not to see it at all.
A review copy of this book was provided by HarperCollins. Trish blogs about autism, books and daily life at In So Many Words.