A Promise of Sweet Tea
A Jewish community in prewar Eastern Europe comes alive in this vividly told story of a childhood interrupted by the Holocaust. In the village of Kortelisy, Poland, young Pinchas Blitt is surrounded by colourful characters and the rich language and traditions of his ancestors. Pinchas is beset by fears of Cossacks and wolves and the local antisemitic children, who taunt him for being a Jew, but he finds belonging in the warmth and love of his family, and in Jewish texts and prayers. In 1939, Pinchas adapts to the new Soviet occupation, but when the Nazis arrive, his beloved village is subjected to humiliations and brutal attacks by the Germans, and he and his family must flee. A precarious existence on the run brings Pinchas face to face with his own mortality and faith, and with a sense of dislocation that will accompany him throughout his life.