The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat

Posted June 10, 2015 by Whitney in Review / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-BertheratThe Travels of Daniel Ascher
Author Déborah Lévy-Bertherat
Publisher Other Press
Publication Date August 21, 2013
Genre: General Fiction
Source: Netgalley
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A sensation in France, this is a story about literary deceptions, family secrets, and a thrilling quest for the truth

Who is the real author of The Black Insignia? Is it H. R. Sanders, whose name is printed on the cover of every installment of the wildly successful young adult adventure series? Or is it Daniel Roche, the enigmatic world traveler who disappears for months at a time? When Daniel’s great-niece, Hélène, moves to Paris to study archeology, she does not expect to be searching for answers to these questions. As rumors circulate, however, that the twenty-fourth volume of The Black Insignia series will be the last, Hélène and her friend Guillaume, a devoted fan of her great-uncle’s books, set out to discover more about the man whose life eludes her. In so doing, she uncovers an explosive secret dating back to the darkest days of the Occupation.

In recounting the moment when one history began and another ended, The Travels of Daniel Ascher explores the true nature of fiction: is it a refuge, a lie, or a stand-in for mourning?

First Impressions

The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat is a story within a story with an author as mysterious as the identity of Lemony Snicket. 

Impressions While Reading

At first, this could seem like a ditty about a writer and his antics. Although, as the reader dives deeper they become aware of the multiple dimensions to Daniel (Roche) Ascher.  The popularity and adult fandom of The Black Insignia series reminded me of grown-up Harry Potter fans (such as myself) who grew up adoring the series staying just as enthralled as adults.  For me, the comparison was amusing.

The novel kept my interest with an Audrey Tautou, Amelie type character as the narrator.   Hélène leads us on a scavenger hunt with clues leading to a well-crafted conclusion.  The secret behind The Black Insignia is heartfelt cast behind the horrid backdrop of the Holocaust.  The plot moved along at its own pace, allowing the reader to grasp the gravity of the situation and consequences that occurred. 

Final Impressions

The Travels of Daniel Ascher by by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat was an excellent  translation to a wonderful journey of a novel.

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