Traveling the countryside with a carnival in a tiny caravan home, Sonja lives the only life she has ever known.
Days are encompassed with trying to survive in a life of poverty, and all focus is on work, as she describes it in her recently released memior "Carnival Girl: Searching for God in the Aftermath of War."
In her mind, Sonja dreamed of living in a real home with her five siblings instead of the nomadic traveling life she has in the present.
Sonja lived in a world of post-World War II Germany, and dreams are usually only found in one’s mind and heart.
One day, the 14-year-old Sonja met some Mormon missionaries, and something in her soul began to whisper to her. Gaining a testimony that the missionaries' message is true and acting on that message becomes a life challenge.
Siblings doubt her and taunt Sonja’s new faith, and her parents don’t believe in the gospel message. Sonja’s new-found values are also a challenge as she is required to work on Sundays.
In a grand tale of human drama and a coming-of-age experience, Sonja’s story of discovering a faith she embraces and her devotion to God inspires courage in following one’s own convictions no matter the cost.
"Carnival Girl" is an unforgettable read as it gives insight into the aftermath of live after a war and what it means to be a seeker for a faith you believe in, to have the courage to stand for those beliefs and be a witness for God when doubt is all around.
Author Sonja Herbert and her five siblings were raised in a caravan, traveling the carnival circuit in post World War II Germany. Herbert joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, married and immigrated to the United States. She received a bachelor of arts degree at Southern Utah University in Cedar City and a master of arts degree from Brigham Young University in Provo.
Herbert, a Provo resident, has raised six children, taught school and English as a second language and currently is a freelance writer. Her website is germanwriter.com.
If you go ...
What: Sonja Herbert book signing
When: Monday, June 18, Tuesday, June 19, and Thursday, June 21, all at noon
Where: Costco, 648 E. 800 South, Orem
Becky Robinette Wright is a freelance writer and photographer who lives in Virginia.