A Children's Book Council of Australia Book of the Year Notable Book for Older Readers
‘A powerful Holocaust story of love, loss and hope that will both challenge and inspire.’
– Jayne Josem, CEO, Melbourne Holocaust Museum
‘With Inkflower, Zail presents a harrowing examination of humanity, masterfully layered with touchpoints of generational trauma, grief, love and family connection. These stories of our world's darkest hours are more important than ever before, and Zail - with her interminable talent and grace - gifts young readers with a reimagined chapter from her family's own epic history. Inkflower is a novel to be studied and savoured, a beautiful if bruising tale any reader will be better for having read.’
– Danielle Binks, Award-winning author
'A writer’s job often involves pulling their hearts out and adhering them firmly to their sleeves for all to see and ogle over, sometimes at great personal cost. Zail has done this to create Inkflower with consummate grace and infinite fearlessness. A read of the highest recommendations that resounds with hope and love. 5 stars.'
-Dimity Powell, Kids Book Review
'Zail has skilfully used a contemporary narrative to explore the horrors of the Holocaust. Inkflower is challenging, but also inspiring and ultimately, full of hope. As Holocaust education is now compulsory in most Australian State Schools, Inkflower would make a perfect addition to reading lists. I highly recommend it for ages 14+. '
- Gaby Meares, Children's Book Council of Australia
‘Suzy Zail’s remarkable and compelling book is a must read for teenagers. Not only is it a story about history, love and courage, it fits perfectly into the Year 9 & 10 History and English syllabi. Based on a true story, it's a valuable source for secondary students studying the Holocaust, bringing the past alive and creating a connection to the younger generations. Suzy Zail beautifully explores the human experience of survival against all odds.’
- Sue Hampel OAM - Co-president Melbourne Holocaust Museum; Advisory Board Member National Archives Australia
‘A compelling family story which deftly moves between the past and present, between the Holocaust in Europe and suburban life in Melbourne. The book will resonate strongly with young readers and is highly suited as a school text.’
- Emeritus Professor Dr Konrad Kwiet, Resident Historian at the Sydney Jewish Museum
'This is a must – read. It is a family, story of love and loss, and a gossipy and realistic picture of school student life. Highly recommended for teenager readers.'
- Helen Purdie. Magpies Magazine: Talking about books for children.
‘Inkflower’s applicability in the secondary English classroom is unquestionable. I would recommend this novel for Year 9 and 10 students, as either a class text or as a mentor text in a crafting texts unit exploring ideas around identity, survival, experiences of conflict and/or intergenerational family connections. Zail has been meticulous in ensuring that the account of the Holocaust experience explored in the novel is historically accurate. Thus, this text could be used meaningfully in a Year 9 or 10 History class as well.’
- Michelle Maglitto, Fintona Girls’ School on behalf of VATE (Victorian Association for the
Teaching of English)
‘Based on her own experience as the daughter of a Holocaust survivor, Zail confronts man’s inhumanity and the impact of war on future generations, masterfully directing readers to recognise the importance of connection and the power of celebrating difference in shaping a more humane world.
– Michelle Prawer, Educator and former Judge, Children’s Book Council of Australia awards
‘It is difficult to convey the horrors of the Holocaust in an age-appropriate way, but Inkflower does precisely that. It neither sanitises nor shrinks from the truth, but is appropriate for younger audiences who are seeking to learn more about this complicated history.’
- Dr Simon Holloway, Manager of Adult Education and Academic Engagement, Melbourne Holocaust Museum
'There are only two books I’ve read which made me sob - big gasping sobs - this is one of them. Suzy’s writing is gripping, authentic and well-crafted. An outstanding read that left its mark on me. Perfect for fans of historical fiction, teen romance and angst, and family secrets. This would be a wonderful class text for Year 10 with lots to unpack and well placed devices to analyse. An important story to continue to share. One of my top reads for the year!'
- Ms Harrison brisbane
Heart wrenching. Powerful. Beautifully written. Thank you Suzy Zail, for sharing YOUR story.
'Inkflower is haunting, important and uplifting. It takes the reader on 2 journeys, one that helps us to learn from the past and the other that shows us that there is a way through loss, how to use memories to take the next step into our futures.
- Bookish. Intoxication
'A poignant, bittersweet story of family secrets, love and war, and re-learning who you are after your life has been changed.'
- Aurelia Orr, Readings Kids
“Inkflower is a deeply moving story of survival inspired by the true events of the author and her family. Suzy Zail has written an honest and candid story of love, courage, family and resilience. There can never be too many stories detailing the horrors of Auschwitz and they need to be recorded now because soon there won't be any survivors left. 5 Stars.”
- The Burgeoning Bookshelf