From a Q&A with Laurie Halse Anderson:
The first sentence of the letter you wrote to accompany the ARC mailing of The Impossible Knife of Memory says a great deal in just three words: “This is personal.”
Yes, it does. My own father, who I’ve just this week moved to an assisted living community near me, so he’s been on my mind a lot, inspired the novel. In 1945, after he graduated from high school, he was drafted into the Army, and was sent to Dachau. He arrived shortly after the concentration camp opened, and his unit’s responsibilities included burial detail and keeping peace amid a lot of craziness. Like so many soldiers, he came home changed, and echoes of what he experienced in Dachau are still being passed down in our family.
You win, PW. Now I'm totally dying to read the book.