Based on the true story of a Jewish family's fight to regain a symbol of their lost life, Restitution begins in Prague on the eve of the Nazi invasion. The Reesers kw that they must flee Czechoslovakia, but first they deliver their valuable oil paintings into the hands of a Christian colleague for safekeeping. Led by their intrepid matriarch, Mari Reeser, the family make their escape under the se of the Nazis, arriving in Canada just days before WWII begins. Despite a successful new life in Toronto, the Reesers never forgot what was left behind. When peace returned to Europe, Mari fought for the return of the paintings, only to be thwarted by the Communist regime. Hope sparked again in 1989 when Mari's son, Karl Reeser, received a letter saying the paintings were his if he could retrieve them. Finding all legal means closed to him, he travelled to Prague to make one last try. Here, fate intervened with an unlikely saviour named Richard VandenBosch, an official at the Canadian Embassy. Together, he and Karl manage to retrieve the paintings and secrete them in the embassy. The final hurdle -- how to get the paintings to Canada? -- is solved by a resourceful art dealer and smuggler named Theofil Kral, whose honest desire to help the Reeser family restore a symbol of their vanished life sees the four paintings returned to them at last.
Kathy Kacer travels widely talking about the importance of remembering the Holocaust and how to talk about it with young people. She has written many award-winning books in the Holocaust Remembrance Series and her books are being sold in more than 20 countries. She embarked on this project with educators Karen Krasny, Alan Gotlib, Susan Gordin, and Shawntelle Nesbitt because they wanted to prove that young people do feel a meaningful connection to the Holocaust. www.kathykacer.com