Sarah’s Key

Sarah’s Key

Zoë Tézac Character Analysis

Julia and Bertrand’s eleven-year-old daughter. Zoë is upbeat and energetic, with a strong sense of humor. She is also incredibly perceptive. Although Julia does not tell her daughter that she is pregnant, when Julia nearly suffers a miscarriage in Italy, Zoë immediately intuits that this pregnancy is what is causing unspoken tension between her parents. Zoë is very supportive of her mother, eager to help with Julia’s research and even occasionally reprimanding Bertrand for his ill-spirited teasing of Julia.

Zoë Tézac Quotes in Sarah’s Key

The Sarah’s Key quotes below are all either spoken by Zoë Tézac or refer to Zoë Tézac. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the St. Martin’s Press edition of Sarah’s Key published in 2008.
Chapter 42 Quotes

I thought of Sarah Starzynski, who had been Zoë’s age when horror came into her life.
I closed my eyes. But I could still see the moment when the policemen tore the children from the mothers at Beaune-la-Rolande. I could not get the image out of my mind.
I held Zoë close, so close she gasped.

Page Number: 173
Explanation and Analysis:
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Zoë Tézac Character Timeline in Sarah’s Key

The timeline below shows where the character Zoë Tézac appears in Sarah’s Key. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
In May of 2002 in Paris, Julia Jarmond and her eleven-year-old daughter, Zoë, visit the apartment they are about to move into. The apartment formerly belonged to Mamé... (full context)
Chapter 4
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Back in 2002, Julia, Zoë, and Antoine begin a tour of Mamé’s old apartment. Julia tells Antoine that it was... (full context)
Chapter 6
Identity Theme Icon
...“cupping [her] ass with a careless, possessive hand” as he does so. Bertrand, Julia, and Zoë discuss the apartment before Julia announces that she has to leave for work. Bertrand takes... (full context)
Chapter 16
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon
...his parents expected Julia to have several children, but she suffered several miscarriages and had Zoë after six years and a difficult pregnancy. Although Julia and Bertrand had both hoped for... (full context)
Chapter 26
Identity Theme Icon
...Tézac family name. Eventually, though, she is overcome with joy. She books a babysitter for Zoë and makes a reservation at her favorite restaurant. (full context)
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
When Zoë gets home from school, Julia wraps her in a hug. Zoë remarks that she is... (full context)
Chapter 28
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
...at which she sat when Bertrand proposed, when she told him she was pregnant with Zoë, and when he told her about Amélie. Through Julia’s reflections, it is finally revealed that... (full context)
Chapter 38
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
Guilt Theme Icon
...Mamé, Edouard asks to speak to Julia in his car. He says he’s learned from Zoë that Julia has continued her research—or, as Edouard calls it, her “prying into the past.”... (full context)
Chapter 42
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
...eighteen and is struck by Sarah’s “palpable sadness.” While Julia is going through the file, Zoë enters the room. She asks Julia what’s wrong, and who the girl in the photograph... (full context)
Chapter 43
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
...which will take place on July 16th, the same day as the Vel’ d’Hiv’ commemoration. Zoë has left for the States to stay with Charla for the summer, and Julia will... (full context)
Chapter 49
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Guilt Theme Icon
The narration jumps ahead again. Julia receives a phone call from Zoë, who is eager to know what progress Julia has made on Sarah’s case. Julia says... (full context)
Chapter 60
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
The Limits of Love Theme Icon
...agrees. Julia wonders how she will break the news of her unexpected Italy trip to Zoë, Bertrand, and her parents, who are expecting her to come visit them in Massachusetts. She... (full context)
Chapter 61
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
In Lucca, Julia and Zoë make their way to the hotel. Julia worries it was crazy to travel to Italy,... (full context)
Chapter 62
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
...Sarah. Though she is eager to meet William, she is too nervous to phone him. Zoë gives Julia the encouragement she needs, and Julia leaves a voicemail for William. (full context)
Chapter 63
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Julia and Zoë go out to dinner, and when they return to the hotel they find a note... (full context)
Chapter 64
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
Bravery Theme Icon
...the next day with intense abdominal pain. Putting it out of her mind, she takes Zoë into town to meet William. When William arrives at the café, Julia is speechless, touched... (full context)
Chapter 65
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
Guilt Theme Icon
...then leaves. Julia watches him go, stunned. Finally, Julia wearily rises to leave. She hears Zoë calling out behind her and starts to notice people on the street staring at her,... (full context)
Chapter 66
The Limits of Love Theme Icon
Julia awakens in a hospital and receives the good news that her baby is fine. Zoë is with her and Bertrand is on his way. In the wake of her conversation... (full context)
Chapter 73
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
Julia arrives home to find the entire Tézac family, along with Bertrand and Zoë, waiting in the living room. The family is split: Edouard, Zoë, and Cécile agree with... (full context)
Chapter 74
Identity Theme Icon
The narrative jumps to the year 2005. Julia, Zoë, and Julia’s two-year-old daughter (young Sarah) now live in New York City. Julia has a... (full context)
Chapter 75
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
The Power of Silence Theme Icon
...and would be moving in with her. Mamé died a few months later. One day, Zoë voiced her mother’s thoughts, asking, “Mom, do we have to go live in the rue... (full context)
Chapter 76
Identity Theme Icon
Though Bertrand was not thrilled at the prospect of Julia and Zoë moving, Julia insisted the move would not be permanent. Initially, Julia and Zoë stayed with... (full context)
Chapter 78
Identity Theme Icon
Zoë catches Julia googling William Rainsferd. Julia abashedly admits that she has looked William up “regularly... (full context)
Chapter 80
Remembrance and History Theme Icon
...of 2005 causes Julia to wonder even more acutely about William. Along with Charla and Zoë, Julia watches the commemoration ceremony on TV, marveling at the candles “glowing through the darkness... (full context)