Zoe is a character who feels some sort of tie with Josie, and she frequently goes to the same locations and learns about Casablanca during the war years.
In this family drama, the two plotlines are compelling in their own right, and I was completely immersed and invested in both of their lives, as well as at times being heartbroken, but there was also hope and optimism.
Fiona Valpy is a fantastic storyteller with a wonderful way of words. She captures the attention of the reader, making them feel as if they are involved in her characters' lives and using some excellent phrasing.
I'm a huge fan of her historical research and I adore the inclusion of actual historical figures as well as those from her imagination; I had no idea that Josephine Baker assisted with the Casablanca resistance movement.
Because Casablanca was a French colony, there were also German soldiers there, so it wasn't a totally secure refugee for the Jewish community, but it was the first step toward escaping Europe and finding safety.
The importance of telling stories to construct bridges, preserve old tales, bring people together, and simply entertain and make people feel better was one of the key messages I got from this book.
I loved the concept of Moroccan culture having dedicated storytellers in their villages, who would act out the tales they told, adding to the drama and keeping the traditions of the culture alive for a new generation.
Fiona Valpy also discusses how these stories don't always have to originate from a book, as quilting, embroidery on scarves, clothing, and henna patterns have been passed down through generations depending on the culture.
Stories of today's refugees, what they are fleeing from, the difficulties they confront, and the squalor in which they live are broken down into smaller sections.
It was difficult to read in parts because it was so sad, but it is critical to remember the difficulties these individuals have endured and the terrors they have seen, as well as their resilience and value.
Fiona Valpy has published another excellent book The Storyteller of Casablanca. The tales of Josie and Zoe illustrate how incredible they were, despite their difficulties, in light of which they persisted and still attempted to assist others.
The incredible descriptions of Casablanca, the city's various sections, sights and scents, magnificent cuisine, and culture were fascinating to read about, with the metropolis becoming the main character in her own right.
This is an amazing tale in every sense of the term, and I strongly advise you to read it; immersive, engaging, and breathtaking!!!!