My Mother’s Secret: A Novel of the Jewish Autonomous Region by Alina Adams
Publication Date: November 15, 2022
History Through Fiction LLC
Genre: Historical Fiction
With his dying breath, Lena‘s father asks his family a cryptic question: “You couldn’t tell, could you?” After his passing, Lena stumbles upon the answer that changes her life forever.
As her revolutionary neighbor mysteriously disappears during Josef Stalin’s Great Terror purges, 18-year-old Regina suspects that she’s the Kremlin’s next target. Under cover of the night, she flees from her parents’ communal apartment in 1930s Moscow to the 20th century’s first Jewish state, Birobidzhan, on the border between Russia and China. Once there, Regina has to grapple with her preconceived notions of socialism and Judaism while asking herself the eternal question: What do we owe each other? How can we best help one another? While she contends with these queries and struggles to help Birobidzhan establish itself, love and war are on the horizon.
New York Times Bestselling author Alina Adams draws on her own experiences as a Jewish refugee from Odessa, USSR as she provides readers a rare glimpse into the world’s first Jewish Autonomous Region. My Mother’s Secret is rooted in detailed research about a little known chapter of Soviet and Jewish history while exploring universal themes of identity, love, loss, war, and parenthood. Readers can expect a whirlwind journey as Regina finds herself and her courage within one of the century’s most tumultuous eras.
My Mother’s Secret
A Novel of the Jewish Autonomous Region
By Alina Adams
“I know what you did,” Aaron said.
Regina froze. No more frightening words could ever be uttered in the Soviet Union. Once someone knew what you did, they had two options. They could report you, or they could use the threat of it to make you work for them. Regina wasn’t sure which she feared more. Especially considering who the words were coming from.
Once again, Marta had hurried off to work without Regina. She’d thought they were on good terms again. Apparently not. Regina vowed to get to the bottom of what was going on with her friend sooner rather than later. For now, Marta’s early departure meant Regina was left to make her way to the fields alone—until Aaron joined her.
He matched Regina step for step, walking an arm’s length beside her, hands in his pockets, shoulders low, the picture of nonchalance. Regina, conversely, had tensed up to the point of rounding her shoulders until they nearly brushed her ears, hugging herself, a palm on each elbow, as she attempted to speed up without making it appear she was rushing ahead of him. She told herself it was because of what Aaron had said, instead of his mere proximity.
“You tried to help me.” In another place, at another time, that might have been a compliment. Here, now, Regina heard a threat. “I’ve tried it before. Compromising. Luria isn’t that sort of man. If it’s not his idea, it can’t be correct.”
“He wants what’s best for Amerzut.” Regina said what she needed to.
“He doesn’t know anything about farming. He learned from books.”
“I studied agriculture at University! Our USSR has developed the most progressive techniques in order to produce maximum yields!”
“Then why isn’t it working?”
“It is! Our rye quota for next year has been doubled, that proves it!”
Aaron said, “The soil here can’t take it. And the weather isn’t optimal for root vegetables, like you suggested. There’s a reason the Chinese and Koreans prefer to grow soybeans.”
“There’s a reason they’re gone,” Regina snapped back. “And, for the record, I did not try to help you. I made a proposal of what would be best for us all.”
Aaron nodded, as if he agreed with her. How could he possibly agree with her? She stood for everything he was against. Didn’t she? Regina felt so confused she no longer knew what she truly believed versus what she was supposed to believe versus what she had no right to believe. All she knew was agreeing with Felix would protect her. Agreeing with Aaron would expose her. In more ways than one.
He said, “You did the right thing. That took a lot of bravery.”
Which left Regina more confused than ever.
About the Author
Alina Adams is the NYT-bestselling author of soap-opera tie-ins, figure-skating mysteries, and romance novels. Born in Odessa, USSR, Adams immigrated to the United States at age seven and learned to speak English by watching American Soap Operas. After receiving her B.A. and M.A. in broadcast communications at San Francisco State University, Adams worked in television as a writer and researcher. Years later she penned the As The World Turns book tie-in, Oakdale Confidential, which became a New York Times bestseller. Adams continued writing and is now a prolific and innovative writer who has authored more than a dozen books, both fiction and nonfiction. Her latest release, The Nesting Dolls, is a Soviet-Jewish historical novel published by HarperCollins in July 2020. Her upcoming novel, My Mother’s Secret: A Novel of the Jewish Autonomous Region, a follow-up to her previous historical novel, is set for release in November 2022. Adams lives in New York City with her husband and their three children.
Blog Tour Schedule
Tuesday, November 15
Review at Dive Into a Good Book
Wednesday, November 16
Review at Pages and Paws
Thursday, November 17
Review at Novels Alive
Review at Michelle the PA Loves to Read
Friday, November 18
Review at Books, Writing, and More
Saturday, November 19
Review at Reading is My Remedy
Monday, November 21
Review at History from a Woman’s Perspective
Tuesday, November 22
Review at Cover Lover Book Review
Wednesday, November 23
Review at The Page Ladies
Friday, November 25
Review at Book Reviews and More
Monday, November 28
Review at 100 Pages a Day
Tuesday, November 29
Interview at Jathan and Heather
Wednesday, November 30
Review at Bibliotica
Friday, December 2
Review at Girl Who Reads
Monday, December 5
Review at Connie’s History Classroom
Tuesday, December 6
Excerpt at Bookworlder
Thursday, December 8
Review at Tammy Reads
Friday, December 9
Excerpt at Coffee and Ink
We have 3 paperbacks & 3 eBooks up for grabs during the blog tour!
The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on December 9th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
My Mother’s Secret
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