The month of April marks the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, the largest revolt by Jews during World War II. Many countries, such as Israel and Poland, take this time to remember the horrors of the Holocaust. We too want to take this time to look at books, both fictional and non-, that recall the struggles, the bravery, and the everlasting effects of that time. While many readers are familiar with Night, Maus, and The Diary of Anne Frank, here we have books that readers might not have read but, once they have, will never forget.
When the museum director for Tokyo, Japan’s children’s Holocaust education center reached out to Auschwitz, she never expected to receive the suitcase of a little girl named Hana. Sifting through the belongings, Fumiko Ishioka began to unravel the story of a young girl’s life at the start of Hitler’s rise to power. The suitcase took Fumiko on a journey she never imagined: a journey to find Hana’s long-lost brother, and to ensure that Hana’s story was one that was told.
When readers imagine time travel, they rarely imagine the worst. In this moving novel, 13-year-old Hannah finds herself leaving behind her family’s Seder dinner after being transported to 1942 Poland, where she faces life in a concentration camp.
Haunting and graphic, this memoir follows the life of a young Jewish girl who was living in Hungary when the Nazis invaded in 1944. From the hope that kept her and her mother strong to her eventual freedom, Elli takes readers on a journey they will never forget.
In this memoir, Irene Gut Opdyke recounts her work to rescue and aid Jews during the Holocaust in Poland. This is, above all, a story about seeing something brutal happening, and not being able to stomach the idea of just standing by and watching. As Opdyke wrote: “I did not ask myself, Should I do this? but How will I do this? Every step of my childhood had brought me to this crossroad; I must take the right path, or I would no longer be myself.”
At first, the title of this book makes no sense. Why would someone break into Auschwitz? Denis Avey, however, did just that. Because he was English, he was treated better than his Jewish counterparts. When Avey befriended some of the Jewish prisoners he worked with in the camp, he decided to switch places with two of them so that they might get some rest and a few square meals. This is a unique account of camaraderie during a horrific time in history.