Rosner’s exquisite, heart-rending debut novel is proof that there’s always going to be room for another story about World War II ... This is an absolutely beautiful and necessary novel, full of heartbreak but also hope, about the bond between mother and daughter, and the sacrifices made for love.
In Shira and Róza, Rosner captures two souls in turmoil, chronicling their grief as well as their strength of will to overcome, their longings and even surprising triumphs. Through the language of music and memory, Rosner thoughtfully composes a life for Róza and Shira that is safe and beautiful until it is shattered ... The Yellow Bird Sings keeps your heart in your throat, your eyes pricked with tears. Rosner excels at illustrating the nostalgic pull of a certain melody, a scrap of blanket, the smell of a loved one, a recipe with eggs. When their shelter is threatened, Róza and Shira must fly, as birds do, with only the bond of their hearts to connect them ... The little light that shines in this terrible darkness—the precious little hope that anchors Róza’s and Shira’s souls—is very bright.
... profoundly moving ... a beautiful and deeply resonant depiction of the enduring, eternal connection between parent and child. Through unforgettable characters and a gripping, multi-layered plot, Rosner shows how both silence and music can become symbols of hope and survival ... Rosner has a keen ability to elicit heart-wrenching emotion through her simple yet luminescent writing. With vivid, descriptive prose that provides insight into both Shira's and her mother's desperation, the author gives readers a sense of physically being in the barn with the two. Despite the World War II setting, Róza's terror, guilt and shame--palpable on the page--become universally recognizable to anyone who has ever felt responsible for a child ... Rosner honors that truth through this exquisite tale, one that demonstrates how words and song have a timeless power to keep loved ones connected and their voices alive through generations.