Lisa of Willesden Lane by Mona Golabek and Lee Cohen
A True Story of Music and Survival During World War II
Illustrator: Olga and Aleksey Ivanov
Adapter: Sarah J. Robbins
An inspiring true story about one girl’s escape from the Holocaust to become a concert pianist against all odds, made popular by Mona Golabek’s acclaimed theatrical performance and the beloved novel The Children of Willesden Lane — now available in an early chapter book format.
In pre-World War II Vienna, Lisa Jura was a musical prodigy who hoped to become a concert pianist. But when enemy forces threatened the city — especially its Jewish population — Lisa’s parents were forced to make a difficult decision. They secured passage for only one of their three daughters through the Kindertransport, and chose to send gifted Lisa to London for safety. As she yearned to be reunited with her family where she lived in a home for refugee children on Willesden Lane, Lisa’s music became a beacon of hope for all of her peers.
A story of the power of music to uplift the human spirit, this compelling tribute has moved and inspired hundreds of thousands of students and adults across the globe. Now is the perfect time to bring this timeless story of hope to even younger audiences as Mona Golabek’s mission to transform historical testimony into youth empowerment has driven many requests for shorter, illustrated formats. Both a picture book and chapter book will be available.
Year first published: 2021