Based on an overlooked part of World War II history, Exile Music tells the story of a family of Jewish Viennese musicians who flee the Nazis in 1939 to find refuge in the mountains of Bolivia. There, they are confronted with altitude sickness, new languages, new cultures, and eventually, some of the Nazis they sought to escape. While young Orly and her father use music to weave together their past and present lives, Orly’s mother abandons singing. She grows increasingly distant, harboring a secret that could put their entire family at risk again. When unexpected visitors arrive in their new homeland, they force Orly to choose where she ultimately belongs. Between 10,000 and 20,000 Jewish refugees found their way to Bolivia during the war years, many of them artists and musicians. Very little has been written about this community. Jennifer Steil lived in Bolivia for four years, meeting some remaining survivors and their descendants. Their stories inspired her book.
- From the Publisher
September 1, 2019
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