Early adolescence gains heightened drama in this autobiographical novel, the diary of Kati. It depicts her life in Debrecen and her departure from Hungary following the 1956 Communist revolution.
People move all the time, but Kati`s conflicts over saying goodbye to her friends and leaving school and home are sharpened by the social and political significance of each event. Applications for exit visas must be made surreptitiously. The stakes are high; a snag at any point would not just end the process but would also be life-threatening.
Rivka Keren`s characterization and plot are vibrant. The vexing bureaucracy, the cellar where Kati hides during the terrifying days of the revolution, Kati`s loving family and even the nosy neighbors are all memorable.