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The Third Daughter: A Novel by Talia Carner

The Third Daughter: A Novel (edition 2019)

by Talia Carner (Author)

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187837,070 (4.22)None
Title:The Third Daughter: A Novel
Authors:Talia Carner (Author)
Info:William Morrow Paperbacks (2019), 432 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:historical fiction

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The Third Daughter: A Novel by Talia Carner



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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received an advanced review copy of this book through the Early Reviewer's Program. The Third Daughter is a fictionalized account of the hundreds of thousands of Eastern European Jewish girls who were ensnared into sexual slavery in South America in the 1890s.

The story begins with 14 year old Batya and her family pushing their belongings along a road away from their village in Russia. The village has just been burned down in a pogrom and her father believes that they can eventually reach the Pale of Settlement and board a ship for America. Her mother knows better. They have no money for tickets for the ship. Upon reaching the Pale the family is offered temporary work in a tavern. They feel lucky. They finally have a roof over their heads and food to eat after weeks of travel.

While at the tavern, a wealthy Jewish man from America, Reb Moskowitz, passes through on his way to his home village to find a bride. When he sees Batya he falls in love and asks her father to marry her. Batya's father agrees to the marriage because Moskowitz is wealthy and can provide a wonderful life for his daughter. He is thinking, however, that the family can join them eventually in America. Batya does not want to marry him but goes along with the plan. To her surprise when she and Moskowitz are about to board the ship for America, Moskowitz leaves her with an assistant and stays in Russia. He has still not formally married her but has raped her twice because "he cannot resist such a beautiful bride." Of course, the assistant treats her the same while sailing for America. When the ship docks in Buenos Aires Batya realizes that she is in South America, not the country that she hoped to emigrate to. She quickly understands that she must live as a prostitute for Reb Moskowitz in order to survive. To resist meant torture and/or death at the hands of the powerful pimp association Zwi Migdal whose members included politicians and law enforcement officers.

The story was only graphic enough to get the point across to the reader what was happening to Batya and the other girls. The author added in characters from real life such as Baron Maurice de Hirsch who founded the Jewish Colonization Association in order to repatriate Russian Jews. The pimp association, Zwi Migdal, actually existed in Buenos Aires. Members of the association would travel to Russia, Ukraine and other Eastern European countries to kidnap girls and force them into prostitution. Most of the girls ended up in Buenos Aires. If they tried to flee they were killed. Even if they stayed the life expectancy was no more than 10 years. These girls were kidnapped around age 14 and died by age 25. At 25 they were considered too age to prostitute by their handlers and put out on the streets where they starved to death.

This book tells a not too well known part of Jewish history that occurred in the 1890s to 1910. I highly recommend it. Although it is a horrifying tale, because it actually happened to 150,000 - 200,000 girls I believe that we owe it to them to read their story. ( )
1 vote Violette62 | Aug 13, 2019 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I loved this book. It is the compelling story of Batya, a young jewish girl sold into slavery in the late 1800s . After the pogroms in Russia forced Batya and her family from their home, her parents, in desperation, allowed her to leave with a wealthy stranger, who promised her marriage and a life of luxury in America. Instead, she was repeatedly raped and beaten, and sent to Argentina, where she was to become a sex slave. Her love for her family and the hope of giving them a better life gave her the courage to survive. This story was based on true events, in fact 150.000 girls were lured to Argentina by the pimp's union, Zwi Migdal, and sold into prostitution. This unconscionable situation was allowed to continue for 70 years in Argentina, where prostitution was legal. The book also credits Baron Maurice de Hirsch for his generous philanthropy, which funded the Jewish Colonization Association, for the repatriation and education of Russian Jews. Thank you, Talia Carner, for bringing to life these stories which should not be forgotten. ( )
1 vote Kathyk22 | Jul 31, 2019 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I loved this book! I predict it will be a bestseller. Wonderfully written historical fiction about a period in time unknown to me before I read this book. Rio de Janero in the 1890's was a hotbed for sex slavery. Most of the girls were Jewish and stolen from Eastern Europe. Just as these people were being ripped from their homes by pogroms, insidious men were promising these young women marriage and wealth in the America's only to enslave them into a life of prostitution. This is the story of Batya and her fight to free herself from this life. ( )
1 vote mel927 | Jul 29, 2019 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The Third Daughter is a powerful Historical Fiction novel about an era in Argentina's history which should never be forgotten. A group of Jewish pimps, Zwi Migdal, kidnap young Jewish Eastern European girls to work as prostitutes in the brothels of Buenos Aires where prostitution is legal. These men and some women make money off the backs of these innocent girls who are now forced into a life of slavery.

The story's protagonist, Batya, has been taken from her life of poverty in Russia to be married to a wealthy man who promises her parents she will enjoy the riches of America. The reader's heart will be broken and angry will be forthcoming. You will be unable to put this book down to see if Batya will be rescued and reunited with her family. The book is an intense read but well worth the information of this era. ( )
  Gingersnap000 | Jul 28, 2019 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is a horrifying fictionalized look into the history of Buenos Aires when a legal union of pimps lured over 200,000 girls mainly from eastern Europe into a life of prostitution under the guise of taking them to America for purposes of marriage in the late 19th century. Unbelievably, it went on for 70 years.

Batya's family is struggling to survive when the pogroms begin against the Jews in Russia, and they are forced to leave their home with virtually nothing. Their struggles intensify until they meet a wealthy man who declares he wants to marry a virtuous Jewish girl like Batya and take her to America despite the fact that she is only 14 years old. Her family reluctantly agrees, and thus her hellish existence in a brothel begins. The nod to Fiddler on the Roof is incidental and perhaps unnecessary to this story.

My thanks to LibraryThing and the publisher for the opportunity to review this book. ( )
  pdebolt | Jul 23, 2019 |
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From the author of Jerusalem Maiden comes a remarkable story, inspired by little-known true events, about the thousands of young Jewish women who were trafficked into prostitution at the turn of the 20th century, and whose subjugation helped build Buenos Aires.

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