Using the innovative format of speculative fiction based on a newly-discovered cache of fifty 1920s and ´30s vintage family photographs from playwright Max Mohr, novelist (Horace Afoot, The Wasties) Reuss weaves a story of loss and longing, switching between Mohr, a German Jew who exiled himself to Shanghai, and his wife Kathe and daughter Eva still in Germany as the Nazis are coming to full power. Practicing as a physician, Mohr, after a trip to Mt. Fuji with his mistress, finds himself serving in the heat of battle as China is invaded by the Japanese. Back home, Kathe is faced with dwindling resources and a growing daughter who wants to know when her father will send for them, even as she relishes her mother’s enchanting stories of the past.
Told with skill and beauty and haunted by the duo-toned photographs, Reuss captures the distanced writer bounding between heroics and fatalism, his spirited wife and child, and their lives both separate and apart during a time of the world gone mad.