This map drawn by the wonderful Holly Hollon shows part of the European research journey I took to research Lilac Girls. Though Caroline Ferriday’s archive at her home in Bethlehem, Ct. was the perfect starting place, traveling to Poland, France and Germany to see my settings firsthand was invaluable.
Caroline’s New York
The map below is a reimagining of New York City, circa 1939, when Lilac Girls opens. It features landmarks at which scenes in the book take place, like The Plaza Hotel and Rockefeller Center, as well as fictitious spots such as the Snyder and Goodrich Antique Shop and Le Grenier Restaurant, both settings that live only in the book.
I hope it’s fun for readers who know New York to see how Caroline’s fictitious world meets the real thing and hope it gives those who’ve never stepped foot in Manhattan a frame of reference for how Caroline moves about the city in the book.
Kasia, the Polish main character in Lilac Girls, grows up in Lublin Poland, as many of the women who were arrested in the underground and sent to Ravensbruck Concentration Camp did. Below is a map of her world as seen in the book. I love the details Holly Hollon has given it–right down to Nadia’s orange door and her Felka curled up on the front stoop. You can see many of these landmarks today in Lublin, including the imposing Lublin Castle and Grodzska and Crakow Gates and the Crown Court Building. It’s a lovely city still today!