War Orphan

1945, Auschwitz: I stumble out of the gates, tightly grasping the hands of two smaller children. Hunger swirls in my stomach and the barren landscape swims before my eyes. I can barely believe it. We’re free. We survived. But what happens now…

Sixteen-year-old Tasha Ancel turns to take one last look at the imposing place that stole her freedom and her childhood. She has no idea how she continued to live when so many others did not. For the first time in months, her heart beats with hope for her future and that of the smaller children who cling to her now.

Tasha was torn from her mother’s arms by an SS guard days before the gates of Auschwitz opened. Now she only has a lock of her mother’s fiery hair. Desperate to be reunited, Tasha asks everyone she meets if they’ve seen a woman with flame-red hair. But with so many people trying to locate their loved ones in the chaotic aftermath of war finding her feels like an impossible task.

Officially an orphan, Tasha is given the chance to start a new life in the Lake District in England. She knows her mother would want her to take the opportunity but she can’t bear the thought of leaving Poland without her.

Tasha must make a heartbreaking decision: will she stay in war-ravaged Europe and cling on to the hope that the person she loves most in the world is alive, or take a long journey across the sea towards an uncertain future?


An absolutely unputdownable and heart-wrenching WW2 story of survival against all odds and learning to live and love again. Fans of The Tattooist of AuschwitzOrphan Train and The Nightingale will be gripped.

What readers are saying about The War Orphan:

‘Broke my heart... Destroyed me emotionally and I had to take a minute to breathe… The tears were crazy… Amazing… I was a mess throughout and had to constantly put down my book due to the tears.’@phoebereadsxx, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘Heart-wrenching… I read this in one sitting. Whoa, my emotions are ALL over the place!!! Wow!!! Wow!!! Wow!!!... A total page-turner!’ Goodreads Reviewer,⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘The easiest five stars I’ve ever given… Completely heart-wrenching and had me in tears more than once… Wonderful… So powerful and moving, I really didn’t want this to end.’ ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Aaarrgghhhh, the heartache!!... just breaks my heart… I loved… amazing… so many emotions… heartwarming and heartbreaking… Definitely recommended.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘Left me speechless and moved to tears… pierced my heart… I was taken on a journey filled with such deep sadness… the story keeps rolling in like the waves over your heart… brilliant… exceptional… 5 stars.’ Cindy L Spear,⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Phenomenal… my favourite of the year, and I read a lot!… It was hard to put this one down… heart wrenching, shocking and beautiful. I can’t wait to read more of Anna Stuart’s books.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

If I could give this book 10 stars I absolutely would!!… This was such a moving story… This book will forever have my heart.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Kept me reading from dawn until well past bedtime… pulled at my heartstrings… I will never forget this story… This book will be forever on my bookshelf to read repeatedly. Absolutely beautiful storytelling. Five stars!’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I could not stop crying while reading this book… beautifully written and so heartbreaking… I was amazed… a 5-star read and I recommend this book to everyone.’ @sisterhood_of_reading, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐