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Villa Air-Bel: World War II, escape, and a house in Marseille

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France, 1940. The once glittering boulevards of Paris teem with spies, collaborators, and the Gestapo now that France has fallen to Hitler's Wermacht. For André Breton, Max Ernst, Victor Serge, Marc Chagall, Consuelo de Saint-Exupéry, Remedios Varo, Benjamin Péret, and scores of other cultural elite denounced as enemies of the Third Reich, fear and uncertainty define daily life. One wrong glance, one misplaced confidence, could mean arrest, deportation, and death. Their only salvation is the Villa Air-Bel, a château outside Marseille where a group of young people will go to extraordinary lengths to keep them alive.

Financed by the Emergency Rescue Committee, a private American relief organization, unlikely heroes—feisty graduate student Miriam Davenport, Harvard-educated classical scholar Varian Fry, beautiful and compelling heiress Mary Jayne Gold, and brilliant young Socialist and survivor of the Battle of Dunkerque Danny Bénédite and his British wife, Theo—cajole, outwit, and use every means possible to stave off the Nazis and newly installed Vichy government officials circling closer with each passing day. The château was a vibrant artistic salon, home to lively debates and clandestine affairs, to Sunday art auctions and subversive surrealist games. Relationships within the house were tense and arguments were common, but the will to survive kept the covert operation under wraps. Beyond the château's luscious façade war raged, yet hope reverberated within its halls. With the aid of their young rescuers, this diverse intelligentsia—intense, brilliant, and utterly terrified—was able to survive one of the darkest chapters of the twentieth century.

Villa Air-Bel is a powerfully told, meticulously researched true story. Rosemary Sullivan explores the diaries, memoirs, and letters of the individuals involved while uncovering their private worlds and the web of relationships they developed. Filled with suspense, drama, and intrigue, Villa Air-Bel is an excellent work of narrative nonfiction that delves into a fascinating albeit hidden saga in our recent history.

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ISBN:
9780060732509
9780061856891
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID889f5802-85b5-e21b-0578-1e00d296918c
Grouping Titlevilla air bel world war ii escape and a house in marseille
Grouping Authorrosemary sullivan
Grouping Categorybook
Grouping LanguageEnglish (eng)
Last Grouping Update2021-02-27 02:28:01AM
Last Indexed2021-02-27 03:59:24AM
Novelist Primary ISBNnone

Solr Details

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authorRosemary Sullivan
author_displaySullivan, Rosemary
available_at_catalogValley Hi-North Laguna
detailed_location_catalogValley Hi-North Laguna
display_description

France, 1940. The once glittering boulevards of Paris teem with spies, collaborators, and the Gestapo now that France has fallen to Hitler's Wermacht. For André Breton, Max Ernst, Victor Serge, Marc Chagall, Consuelo de Saint-Exupéry, Remedios Varo, Benjamin Péret, and scores of other cultural elite denounced as enemies of the Third Reich, fear and uncertainty define daily life. One wrong glance, one misplaced confidence, could mean arrest, deportation, and death. Their only salvation is the Villa Air-Bel, a château outside Marseille where a group of young people will go to extraordinary lengths to keep them alive.

Financed by the Emergency Rescue Committee, a private American relief organization, unlikely heroes—feisty graduate student Miriam Davenport, Harvard-educated classical scholar Varian Fry, beautiful and compelling heiress Mary Jayne Gold, and brilliant young Socialist and survivor of the Battle of Dunkerque Danny Bénédite and his British wife, Theo—cajole, outwit, and use every means possible to stave off the Nazis and newly installed Vichy government officials circling closer with each passing day. The château was a vibrant artistic salon, home to lively debates and clandestine affairs, to Sunday art auctions and subversive surrealist games. Relationships within the house were tense and arguments were common, but the will to survive kept the covert operation under wraps. Beyond the château's luscious façade war raged, yet hope reverberated within its halls. With the aid of their young rescuers, this diverse intelligentsia—intense, brilliant, and utterly terrified—was able to survive one of the darkest chapters of the twentieth century.

Villa Air-Bel is a powerfully told, meticulously researched true story. Rosemary Sullivan explores the diaries, memoirs, and letters of the individuals involved while uncovering their private worlds and the web of relationships they developed. Filled with suspense, drama, and intrigue, Villa Air-Bel is an excellent work of narrative nonfiction that delves into a fascinating albeit hidden saga in our recent history.

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literary_formNon Fiction
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local_callnumber_catalog940.5308 V712zs 2006
owning_library_catalogSacramento Public Library
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primary_isbn9780060732509
publishDate2006
2009
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ils:.b17993003BookBooks1st ed.EnglishHarperCollins, c2006.xv, 476 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
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subject_facetArtists -- Homes and haunts -- France -- Marseille
Escapes -- France -- Marseille
France -- History -- German occupation, 1940-1945
Intellectuals -- Homes and haunts -- France -- Marseille
Marseille (France) -- History
Rescues -- France -- Marseille
Villa Air-Bel (Marseille, France)
World War, 1939-1945 -- France -- Marseille
title_displayVilla Air-Bel : World War II, escape, and a house in Marseille
title_fullVilla Air-Bel : World War II, escape, and a house in Marseille / Rosemary Sullivan
Villa Air-Bel World War II, Escape, and a House in Marseille
title_shortVilla Air-Bel
title_subWorld War II, escape, and a house in Marseille
topic_facetArtists
Escapes
History
Homes and haunts
Intellectuals
Nonfiction
Rescues
World War, 1939-1945