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Testament

Kim Sherwood

7 Reviews

Rated 0

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945), Second World War fiction, The Holocaust

A prize-winning novel following a young woman uncovering the truth about her family's past in the Hungarian Holocaust.

'What a writer. I was totally captivated. Moving and ultimately uplifting' HEATHER MORRIS, author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz

'I am absorbed by the delicacy, even the beauty, with which she writes of the trauma of history' AMIT CHAUDHURI


WINNER OF THE BATH NOVEL AWARD

Of everyone in her complicated family, Eva was closest to her grandfather: a charismatic painter - and a keeper of secrets. So when he dies, she's hit by a greater loss - of the questions he never answered, and the past he never shared.

It's then she finds the letter from the Jewish Museum in Berlin. They have uncovered the testimony he gave after his forced labour service in Hungary, which took him to the death camps and then to England as a refugee. This is how he survived.

But there is a deeper story that Eva will unravel - of how her grandfather learnt to live afterwards. As she confronts the lies that have haunted her family, their identity shifts and her own takes shape. The testament is in her hands.

Kim Sherwood's extraordinary first novel is a powerful statement of intent. Beautifully written, moving and hopeful, it crosses the tidemark where the third generation meets the first, finding a new language to express love, legacy and our place within history.

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Praise for Testament

  • Testament is ambitious, beautiful and brave. A vital act of remembrance of the Holocaust, it's also a deeply involving story that reaches across generations to speak to our own troubled times. How many debuts are actually important? This one is. - Polly Clark, author of Larchfield

  • A remarkably powerful, moving, assured and beautiful novel heralding the debut of a major writer. I couldn't be more impressed. - Robert Drewe, author of Swimming to the Moon

  • An extraordinary book; sad but optimistic, that enshrines the human spirit.I was so moved by the way it shows blessed creativity thriving even in the depths of hell - Patrick Gale

  • A sensitive and searching novel about Holocaust survivors and their families, it scales a mountain of repressed emotion and feels drawn from life. - Spectrum

  • I am absorbed by the delicacy, even the beauty, with which she writes of the trauma of history . . . It's a real pleasure to see Sherwood approaching this theme - to do with how we discover, read, and reread our past - with subtlety, playfulness, and elegiac sadness. - Amit Chaudhuri, Best Books of 2017, Open Magazine

  • Astonishingly assured. A moving, elegant meditation on identity and the masks we must all sometimes wear. - Christopher Fowler

  • Testament is a masterfully composed and ambitious novel that really grips its

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Kim Sherwood

Kim Sherwood was born in Camden in 1989 and lives in Bath. She studied Creative Writing at UEA, is now Senior Lecturer at the University of the West of England, and teaches prisoners. Her pieces have appeared in Mslexia, Lighthouse, and Going Down Swinging. Kim began researching and writing Testament, her first novel, after her grandfather, the actor George Baker, passed away and her grandmother began to talk about her experiences as a Holocaust Survivor for the first time. It won the 2016 Bath Novel Award.