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The Tattooist of Auschwitz Audio CD – CD, September 4, 2018
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[Read by Richard Armitage]
The Tattooist of Auschwitz is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews, who survived Auschwitz and eventually made their home in Australia. In that terrible place, Lale was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival--literally scratching numbers into his fellow victims' arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust. Lale used the infinitesimal freedom of movement that this position awarded him to exchange jewels and money taken from murdered Jews for food to keep others alive. If he had been caught he would have been killed; many owed him their survival.
There have been many books about the Holocaust--and there will be many more. What makes this one so memorable is Lale Sokolov's incredible zest for life. He understood exactly what was in store for him and his fellow prisoners and he was determined to survive -- not just to survive, but to leave the camp with his dignity and integrity intact, to live his life to the full. Terrible though this story is, it is also a story of hope and of courage. It is also -- almost unbelievably -- a love story. Waiting in line to be tattooed, terrified and shaking, was a young girl. For Lale -- a dandy, a jack-the-lad, a bit of a chancer -- it was love at first sight and he determined not only to survive himself, but to ensure that Gita did, too. His story -- their story -- will make you weep, but you will also find it uplifting. It shows the very best of humanity in the very worst of circumstances.
Like many survivors, Lale and Gita told few people their story after the war. They eventually made their way to Australia, where they raised a son and had a successful life. But when Gita died, Lale felt he could no longer carry the burden of their past alone. He chose to tell his story.
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''What an extraordinary and important book this is. We need as many memories of the Holocaust as we can retain, and this is a moving and ultimately uplifting story of love, loyalties and friendship amidst the horrors of war.'' --Jill Mansell, author of This Could Change Everything
''Based on a true story, the wrenching yet riveting tale … is a moving testament to the power of kindness, ingenuity, and hope.'' --People
''Richard Armitage is a superb narrator whose performance here is among his best … Armitage's performance captures every emotion from fear to trepidation to hope and even to love with understated warmth. Sokolov waited until the death of his wife, whom he met in the camp, before revealing his story to Morris. It was worth the wait. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award.'' --AudioFile
About the Author
Heather Morris is a writer and native of New Zealand, now residing in Australia. In 2003, she was introduced to Lale Sokolov, who entrusted her with the innermost details of his life during the Holocaust.
- Publisher : HarperCollins and Blackstone Audio; Unabridged AUDIO edition (September 4, 2018)
- Language : English
- Audio CD : 1 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1982554703
- ISBN-13 : 978-1982554705
- Item Weight : 6.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.8 x 0.5 x 5.6 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #374,199 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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I have read so many stories of this time, some good and some not so, some acclaimed and some relatively unknown. The Tattooist of Aushwitz is by far the best. Heather’s ability to make written words come to life is a true gift. This is one of those books that I will carry in my soul forever.
I was surprised to see so many positive reviews! A few others have been able to concisely pinpoint the problem with the writing - mainly the book is a narrative shell that primarily glosses over the struggle of surviving such dire circumstances to focus on a love plot with little dimension. Elementary prose and cheesy one-liners dominate this novel.
At the very least, I appreciate the attempt to bring light to such a unique, real-life love story....
There are times you read books for entertainment and times you read for knowledge. This may be a bit of both because it involves a love story too - Lale and Gita. But oh, the horror of their situation.
Going with my usual format...
Is it worth the cost? $7.99 - yes, absolutetly.
Is it a page turner?
Yes, it is. Ordinarily, I would argue that this kind of book does not need to be a page turner because that's not the point... but it is.
Did I think about this book when I was not reading this book?
Not at first, I was able to put it down for a week and go on with my trip. But as I got further involved, I found myself thinking about Lale's story more and more and wanted to get back to the book.
Will I think about this book once I am finished?
Lale's story stays with you. As mentioned above, I actually visited Auschwitz while reading this book. On display are many photos of prisoners arriving, prisoners on their way to be gassed, murdered prisoners, starving prisoners. Frankly I could not look - it was too hard to put a face to such horrors. For me, this book gave a name to the millions of people who perished at Auschwitz and who lived too.
The book is written like a bad teenage romance. I could live with that. What I found offensive was the description of life at Auschwitz. Sounded more like freshmen year at college--not a death camp. Meeting girls, making great friends-- I'm surprised the author didn't throw in a few dances and keg parties. Holocaust denial is real--and a book like this just serves to feed that narrative. The positive reviews of this book are mind boggling to me. Anything that normalizes the holocaust is highly offensive. Don't read it.
The abhorrent disgrace and disgust of the holocaust cries out “lest we never forget”, which our retribution portrays in these stories being retold and remembered from generation to generation. The Jews will proudly survive and our voices will be heard in unity.
My husband and I have walked through Auschwitz and Birkenau - a chilling icy tour of a deathly historical event in history which is incomprehensible albeit remembered.
Top reviews from other countries
This is not a downbeat tale. The strength of the human spirit shines through on every page. It was hard to put down, I had to keep reading. And in the last pages there are amazing surprises.
A wonderful book about a truly remarkable character. I cannot recommend this more highly.