Hiding in Plain Sight: Eluding the Nazis in Occupied France is an unusual memoir about the childhood and young adulthood of Sarah Lew Miller. Born in a large Orthodox Jewish family in Dereczyn, Poland, Sarah's family moved to Paris in 1937 to escape poverty and anti-Semitism. The German occupation of France just three years later threatened her family's existence with repressive anti-Jewish laws and massive deportations of Jews to death camps.
With the help of Christian neighbors, they evaded arrest for several years in Paris by living undercover beginning in July 1942. After Sarah’s mother was arrested and then rescued, Sarah's parents went into deep hiding, while their eight children found refuge in rural villages scattered around France. Through the help of a French Resistance organization, the Sixième, Sarah escaped to Switzerland in May1944 and her entire family reunited in 1945 in Paris after the war ended.
This personal and historical account of an era conveys the day-to-day life of a teenage girl living in Nazi-occupied France with the ever-present threat of death. Despite her loneliness, hardships and the derailment of her childhood dreams, she kept her strong family ties and maintained her faith in humanity.
This memoir attests to qualities of courage, resilience and hope recalling Anne Frank, and the author's harrowing escapes read much like an adventure novel.