ROWING HOME explores how a talented, assimilated Jewish family living in Berlin in 1933 during the early rise of Nazism came to the decision to escape. What finally convinced them that it was time to leave? What confluence of events allowed them to do so? The novel follows the life of George Grossinger,a young college student and avid rower, his father, Werner, a newspaper editor, and mother, Frieda, an accomplished violinist, as their world ominously contracts. George finds that, even though a gifted rower, he will no longer be allowed to represent his country in competitions. George's attempts to evade these constrictions take him to London and Palestine, where he encounters worlds both frightening and open to possibilities.
SYBIL TERRES GILMAR is the author of two other novels of historical fiction, The Jew and the Pope, and Chasing Stolen Art, both also based on the Jewish experience. Rowing Home, was inspired by a visit to Israel in December of 2019, when she rowed on the Yarkon River in Tel Aviv with a club founded in 1935 by Jewish refugees from Germany. As a rower and a the child of immigrants, she knew there was a story there. Her own passion for rowing began at the age of sixty-nine when, fascinated bythe sculls on the Schuylkill, she decided to take lessons herself. At eighty-seven, she is still rowing her single Arca de Noe at Whitemarsh Boat Club in Conshohocken, PA.