A Rembrandt in the Holocaust

A traded painting helps an art dealer's daughter escape from Nazi-occupied Holland and land on Long Island

“Rembrandt’s Shadow” by Janet Lee Berg tells the story of Sylvie Rosenberg, a teenage daughter of a successful but emotionally distant art dealer in Holland in the 1930s. When the Nazis occupy the country, her father trades a painting by Rembrandt for his daughter’s safety and that of 25 other Jews.

Sylvie finds herself standing on a train platform surrounded by Gestapo, guns, and attack dogs, wondering if the next train will take her to Spain or to a concentration camp. Across locations and decades, the book follows her experiences at a British internment facility in Jamaica and on to Long Island, where a new life with a door-to-door salesman ends up with her and her son being abandoned.

The debut novel, just published by Post Hill Press, is based on the experiences of the Katz family, of whom Ms. Berg’s husband is a descendant. Ms. Berg, the author of “Glitz of the Hamptons” and a contributor of essays to The Star for many years, will read from it on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Quogue Library. She will also discuss restitution of art looted during World War II.

For those out and about farther up the Island tomorrow, Ms. Berg can be seen at 7 p.m. at the Book Revue in Huntington.