Praise for We Were the Lucky Ones

The Providence Journal Reviews We Were the Lucky Ones

“World War II and the Holocaust continue to provide fodder for contemporary novelists. Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See and Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale are just two examples of runaway bestsellers that capture the fear and horror that gripped Europe in those days. Now comes first-time novelist Georgia Hunter with a tale that is equally gripping and based on the experiences of her family . . .  If you pay attention to international news, this book should make you more than a little uncomfortable. The plight of Europe’s Jews and the hesitancy of other countries to come to their aid brings to mind today’s refugees who flee violence in Syria, Somalia, and the Sudan.  . . . Hunter writes movingly from many different perspectives the book moves at a swift, devastating pace, and she makes us care about every soul whose life is threatened.” The Providence Journal

We Were the Lucky Ones Featured in The Jewish Voice

“Turning history into fiction can be tricky, especially when using real names and details. Hunter finesses the challenge. Her novel brings the Kurcs to life in heart-pounding detail, from passionate young love and beloved traditions to narrow escapes, heartbreaking choices, starvation, imprisonment and torture. We come to care deeply about the fate of each of these resourceful, determined characters.”—The Jewish Voice

Tara Leigh compares We Were the Lucky Ones to The Diary of Anne Frank

“Although Hunter has been researching, interviewing and writing for several years, this novel seems quite timely; it is a heartbreakingly realistic reminder that we all share the same desires, the same needs, the same humanity. It is also a reminder that the most horrifying, traumatic experiences of our lives never leave us; rather, they become incorporated into our story, our being, and place us on an entirely different path than the one we might have expected. ” –Tara Leigh 

“putting faces and names to the victims of the Holocaust in a way that a history class or textbook can’t do”

Cool Material recommends We Were the Lucky Ones as one of 11 New Books You Should Read in 2017:

“Most of the time, when we talk about the horrors of the Holocaust, we do so with sweeping statements and big picture statistics. We don’t actually dive into the minutiae of what it meant to be one of the Jewish families broken up, scattered, or exterminated. But exploring that minutiae is exactly what We Were the Lucky Ones aims to do. The book follows a single family, the Kurcs, as they struggle to survive Nazi persecution, each sibling finding their own way to deal with a government that has made it explicitly clear what they are trying to do. The Kurcs are putting faces and names to the victims of the Holocaust in a way that a history class or textbook can’t do.”

 

Audible names We Were the Lucky Ones a Best New Release for February

“WWII and its heartbreaking history have served as the backdrop to some of my all-time favorite novels (Code Name VerityThe Nightingaleto name a few). It is in these dark times that we search most desperately for a person’s humanity – and these stories all share incredibly brave, yet incredibly human, characters. Georgia Hunter’s debut novel We Were the Lucky Ones was born of her childhood discovery that she descended from a family of Holocaust survivors and her years-long attempt to unravel her family’s history. Rich in setting, poignant in delivery, and amplified by moving performances from Robert Fass and Kathleen Gati, Hunter’s novel is set to enter the impressive canon of WWII literature that touches you at your core.” –Katie, Audible Editor

“Love in the face of global adversity? It couldn’t be more timely.” –Glamour magazine, on We Were the Lucky Ones

We Were the Lucky Ones is picked by Glamour magazine as one of the Best Books to Read in 2017!

“Based on a true story, this novel tells the tale of how the Polish, Jewish Kurc family was separated by World War Two and eventually found its way back together, traveling across continents and years and through all manner of hostility. Love in the face of global adversity? It couldn’t be more timely.”

“Fifteen New Authors You’re Going to be Obsessed With” –Bustle

Bustle includes We Were the Lucky Ones in their “15 New Authors You’re Going to be Obsessed With” roundup!

“Based on the true experiences of the author’s grandfather, Georgia Hunter’s debut novel We Were the Lucky Ones tells the gripping and moving story of three generations of one Jewish family, the Kurcs, who are ripped apart at the start of World War II, and whose lives quickly become unrecognizable — as they lose their homes, their jobs, their friends, their safety and other basic rights, and each other. But despite the unrelenting horrors of the war and the Holocaust, the Kurcs still manage to hold onto their humanity: sharing moments of hope and love, resilience and new life with those around them, and remaining determined to reunite with one another after the violence has subsided.”

“the most gripping novel I’ve read in years”

We Were the Lucky Ones is the most gripping novel I’ve read in years.  Georgia Hunter pulled me into another world, vivid, horrifying, astonishing, and heartbreaking, and I walked with the Kurc family as they traversed the edges of life and death.” —Lauren Belfer, New York Times bestselling author of City of Light and And After the Fire.

“A novel of breathtaking sweep and scope”

“An extraordinary, propulsive novel based on the true story of a family of Polish Jews who are separated at the start of the Second World War, determined to survive—and to reunite . . . A novel of breathtaking sweep and scope that spans five continents and six years and transports readers from the jazz clubs of Paris to Kraków’s most brutal prison to the ports of Northern Africa and the farthest reaches of the Siberian gulag, We Were the Lucky Ones demonstrates how, in the face of the 20th century’s darkest moment, the human spirit can find a way to survive, and even triumph.”—Book Bub “Biggest Historical Fiction Releases Coming in 2017” and “11 Great World War II Novels Coming in 2017

“bring[s] into sharp relief the millions of displaced today”

“Elegantly executed and always clear, Hunter evokes pre-war Poland with loving detail, clearly showing what was left behind and lost . . . We Were the Lucky Ones immediately bring[s] into sharp relief the millions of displaced today: Syrians, Yemeni, Somalians, and others. They, too, are musicians, doctors, sophisticated and well-educated humans, individuals with lives worthy of empathy, just as the Jewish refugees of the 1930s and ‘40s were. Just as the Kurcs, they have been uprooted – each with a web of children, siblings, parents, and cousins whose safety and happiness are of paramount importance . . . We Were the Lucky Ones is a compelling read, notable for Hunter’s clear portraits of her plucky, resilient family, and for her ability to build suspense and investment without emotional manipulation.” —Courtney Naliboff, Reform Judaism Magazine

“skillfully woven…emotionally resonant, gripping”

“Georgia Hunter’s We Were the Lucky Ones is a skillfully woven reimagining of her own family’s struggle for survival during World War II. Hunter takes us from the Polish ghetto to Siberia to Brazil, all with spectacular historical detail. This emotionally resonant, gripping portrait of the war is filled with beautifully drawn and wonderfully heroic characters I won’t soon forget.” —Jillian Cantor, author of Margot and The Hours Count

“a truly tremendous accomplishment”

“Reading Georgia Hunter’s We Were the Lucky Ones is like being swung heart first into history. A brave and mesmerizing debut, and a truly tremendous accomplishment.” —Paula McLain, bestselling author of Circling the Sun and The Paris Wife

“an astonishing saga of hope, of luck, of destruction, and …love”

“In her debut novel, We Were the Lucky Ones, Georgia Hunter has crafted her own family history into a sprawling, yet still intimate portrait of those swept up in the devastation of war and scattered to the winds.  It is an astonishing saga of hope, of luck, of destruction, and most remarkably of love, made all the more astonishing because of the true story at its core.” —David R. Gillham, New York Times bestselling author of City of Women

“an inspiring read”

“When Georgia Hunter learns that she is a descendant of large family of Holocaust survivors, she knows that she is destined to be the recorder of their story. This is the result of years of research to gather as much detail about her relatives as she possibly can…an inspiring read, and one that honors the memory and struggle of not just the author’s family, but all of the people who suffered during the war.”Library Reads

“bringing history to life”

“The story Hunter tells through the eyes of her grandparents, great-grandparents and other relatives is one of amazing endurance, bravery, determination and unwavering love . . . Hunter does an excellent job of bringing history to life . . . conveying the desires and hopes of the Kurcs as they fell in love, got married, and had children.” —Shelf Awareness

“extraordinarily moving novel”

“Debut author Hunter excavates the remarkable history of her own family this this chronicle . . . Hunter side-steps hollow sentimentality and nihilism, revealing instead the beautiful complexity and ambiguity of life in this extraordinarily moving novel.” —Publishers Weekly