The story of Mika, a Jewish boy, who becomes a puppeteer in the Warsaw ghetto – a stunning debut for fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Boy with the Striped Pyjamas and Schindler’s List was twelve when the coat was made. Nathan, our tailor and dear friend, cut it for Grandfather in the first week of March 1938.
Even in the most difficult of lives, there is hope. When Mika’s grandfather dies in the Warsaw ghetto, he inherits not only his great coat, but its treasure trove of secrets. In one remote pocket, he finds a papier mache head, a scrap of cloth… a puppet prince. And what better way to cheer the cousin who has lost her father, the little boy who is ill, the neighbours living in one cramped room, than a puppet show? Soon the whole ghetto is talking about the puppet boy – until the day when Mika is stopped by a German officer and is forced into a secret life…
This is a story about survival. It is an epic journey, spanning continents and generations, from Warsaw to the gulags of Siberia, and two lives that intertwine amid the chaos of war. Because even in wartime, there is hope.