Once Upon a Time in France
After fleeing to France in 1925, Joseph Joanovici forges a vastly successful business empire; clever and unscrupulous, he builds a powerful network of corruption and power, winning many enemies along the way. Being Jewish, his position is extremely precarious, especially after the Nazis occupy France. Throughout the war, Joanovici is one of Germany’s most important metal suppliers, but realizing that all his money won’t save him from execution as a Nazi collaborator, he begins supplying metal and assistance to the French Resistance as well.
This story is emotionally rough and quite intense. Based on a real person, Joanovici is presented, controversially, more sympathetically than his actions seem to deserve. But that is part of the appeal of this story. He loves his children, his brother, and his wife (to the frustration of his long-time mistress) and does everything he can to protect them. This humanizing forces you to ponder how one becomes a monster – as Joanovici himself says at the end of the book, you don’t wake up one morning and decide to be a criminal. It happens one small decision at a time. The illustrations are as intense as the story; the plot and illustrations combine perfectly to completely immerse you in this wretched, traumatic tale.
|Page Count||368 pages|
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