The accurate historical details are chilling, yet against the horrors of a concentration camp, the author has drawn out the best, as well as the worst, in every characters. At the same time, she hasn’t lost sight of the evil that hung over the most infamous of all camps: Auschwitz.
I rooted for Helena but at the same time I wanted her to turn her back on Franz, a Nazi who could be kind and helpful, under the influence of his beloved, yet revert back to the not so appealing Nazi man when needed. There we have two characters who are at opposite ends and would never have fallen in love in different circumstances yet are brought in together by the author to make us believe love exists everywhere. Ellie Midwood masters the craft of writing. She has based Auschwitz Syndrome on a true story and weaved a compelling novel.
Helena tells her story in court after the war and after she married Franz. She is still traumatized from the camp experiences, despite having been privileged as she worked in the Kanada department of the camp and had Franz’s protection. Today we have a word for it, Stockholm syndrome, and scientific data to back it up, but it has existed throughout the ages. Ellie Midwood, giving her heroine a fragile mental state after the war, has pushed the boundaries of love stories - I don't want to say romance, it doesn't fit.