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The Tattooist of Auschwitz: A Novel

The Tattooist of Auschwitz: A Novel

Написано Heather Morris

Озвучено Richard Armitage


The Tattooist of Auschwitz: A Novel

Написано Heather Morris

Озвучено Richard Armitage

оценки:
4.5/5 (2,240 оценки)
Длина:
7 hours
Издатель:
Издано:
Sep 4, 2018
ISBN:
9780062866998
Формат:
Аудиокнига

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Примечание редактора

Audie Award winner…

This moving story of love and hope amid atrocities (based on the real-life experiences of a Holocaust survivor forced to tattoo fellow prisoners at Auschwitz) won the 2019 Audie Award for fiction. AudioFile praises the “superb narrator” for capturing “every emotion from fear to trepidation to hope and even to love with understated warmth.”

Описание

This beautiful, illuminating tale of hope and courage is based on interviews that were conducted with Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov—an unforgettable love story in the midst of atrocity.

In April 1942, Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew, is forcibly transported to the concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau. When his captors discover that he speaks several languages, he is put to work as a Tätowierer (the German word for tattooist), tasked with permanently marking his fellow prisoners.

Imprisoned for over two and a half years, Lale witnesses horrific atrocities and barbarism—but also incredible acts of bravery and compassion. Risking his own life, he uses his privileged position to exchange jewels and money from murdered Jews for food to keep his fellow prisoners alive.

One day in July 1942, Lale, prisoner 32407, comforts a trembling young woman waiting in line to have the number 34902 tattooed onto her arm. Her name is Gita, and in that first encounter, Lale vows to somehow survive the camp and marry her.

A vivid, harrowing, and ultimately hopeful re-creation of Lale Sokolov's experiences as the man who tattooed the arms of thousands of prisoners with what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust, The Tattooist of Auschwitz is also a testament to the endurance of love and humanity under the darkest possible conditions.

Издатель:
Издано:
Sep 4, 2018
ISBN:
9780062866998
Формат:
Аудиокнига

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Также доступно как книгеКниге

Об авторе

Heather Morris is a native of New Zealand, now resident in Australia. For several years, while working in a large public hospital in Melbourne, she studied and wrote screenplays, one of which was optioned by an Academy Award-winning screenwriter in the US. In 2003, Heather was introduced to an elderly gentleman who ‘might just have a story worth telling’. The day she met Lale Sokolov changed both their lives. Their friendship grew and Lale embarked on a journey of self-scrutiny, entrusting the innermost details of his life during the Holocaust to her. Heather originally wrote Lale’s story as a screenplay – which ranked high in international competitions – before reshaping it into her debut novel, The Tattooist of Auschwitz.


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Отзывы читателей

  • (4/5)
    Set in Auschwitz, this novel is based on multiple interviews with one of the actual tattooists. This is a poignant ode to the human spirit and the power of love! I suffered from a literary hangover after staying up too late to finish the book. Worth it!
  • (5/5)
    Poignant! Stark take if surviving and living in a concentration camp. Indescribable mans’ inhumanity to others. In the author’s notes we see a glimpse of the author’s interviews with the main character, Lale.
  • (4/5)
    Well written. Interesting book.
  • (4/5)
    The Tattooist of Auschwitz is a book that blurs the lines between history, fiction, memoir, and historical fiction. Because the subtitle of the book is "A Novel," that is how I began reading it. But I had only read a few chapters when I began to suspect that it was weighted more toward memoir than novel. A blurb reads "Based on the Powerful True Story of Love and Survival." But how far along that scale between fiction and history was it? It's a question I struggle with often, along with how accurate are memories (and translations). Then I finished the book and read the appendices, which include three photos of the couple and an afterward by their son. The author was able to interview the protagonist, Lale Sokolov, over a period of three years. Evidence that slides the book further toward the history/memoir side of the scale.Lale Sokolov is a smartly-dressed ladies man with a bright future when the Nazis order one man from every Slovak family to join a group of would-be workers for the Germans. Lale volunteers, and arrives at the rendezvous point in a sharp suit and with a suitcase of books. The true purpose of the selection becomes more clear when the men are loaded into cattle cars heading toward Poland. Lale's story of life in the camps, how he landed a protected job in the camp, and how he met Gita is honest, but upbeat and a bit sugarcoated. It's an unusual tone for a Holocaust book, but seems to suit his personality (both in the book and real life).Despite being a close retelling, there are a couple of errors, I found puzzling. Lale's name is actually spelled Lali, and Gita's tattoo was the number 4562, not 34902. This latter has created some consternation among historians and survivors. The tattooed number was used to replace a person's name and make it easier for the Nazis to think of people as things, dehumanized and nameless. It was both an ugly practicality and a symbolic loss of self. To not correctly associate a survivor's tattooed number with their name, is to further separate the person from themselves. To many survivors, this was an affront. Overall, I found the book a quick and not depressing book, which I enjoyed more when I read the matter at the end of the book. Knowing the details of the real Lali and Gita added depth to the fictionalized account. 3.5 stars
  • (5/5)
    Although I’ve read many Holocaust books and memoirs the Tatooist of Auschwitz is different. I hesitated reading this one for a long time but I’m glad I persevered. Unusual memoir (fictionalized true story) written in spare precise language. Gives testimony to Nazi atrocities as well as testimony to the kindness and love that Jewish and Romani prisoners showed each other in the darkest of circumstances. The powerful survival instinct that Lale and Gita had was their resistance. This strength and commitment to resistance explains how people were able to endure the worst tortures and losses. Explains how holocaust survivors could coninue to hope and promise to tell of their experiences. It’s still incredibly hard to believe the depth of the final solution plan perpetrated by the Nazis. It’s hard to believe the cruelty and evil perpetrated by collaborators. BUT it’s the truth and it’s so important for the world to be reminded as these stories continue to emerge. No matter how many Holocaust books I read, it’s necessary for all people to have more and continual reminders. Thank you Heather Morris for this important book!
  • (4/5)
    I grudgingly read this book, as it was a book club selection, because I only had intentions in my life to ever read one more book about the Holocaust: The Diary of Anne Frank. I've read several over the years and while I don't think I've read a bad one, I much prefer my senseless murders to be the result of crazed fictional serial killers. It's too hard for me to read books or watch movies about non-fictional accounts of war: it is always far to real and can't enjoy them regardless of how good they are.This book lived up to its tagline as "based on the powerful true story of love and survival". Lale, the Tatowierer of Auschwitz, is a young man with remarkable kindness, charisma, and just plan luck who is able to work his charms with both men and women in order to survive the horrors of Nazi internment. He lucks/charms his way into a job assisting the current tattooer, a position that comes with a more leeway and privileges than most prisoners receive. Lale, who has always had an eye for the ladies, notices Gita while tattooing her and it's love at first sight. The story follows their stolen moments over the years imprisoned and how their love and his assured promise for their future keeps them going from one day to the next. Lale, with his personality and his position, is able to make connections throughout the camp that allow him to provide small amounts of assistance and protection for Gita, other friends he has made, and himself.This is not to say that there are not accounts of horrendous acts of violence, senseless deaths, and just unbelievable inhuman treatment, but Lale's outlook while put in an impossible situation is something to aspire to achieve.
  • (4/5)
    This book was raw and edgy. It weeped emotion and stirred feelings that I never knew I had. The war story was brutal, but the romance was epic. There was hope in Lale’s character and danger in the sacrifice, lies, and secrets. I definitely recommend it to all historical fans. It didn’t exactly live up to the Bronze Horseman, but it had a similar premise and a love that lasted through turmoil.
  • (4/5)
    ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz’ is a rather fast-paced novel about Lale Sokolov, a Slovokian-Austrian survivor of the concentration camps during WWII. At Auschwitz he managed to survive as the tatowierer (one who imprinted the tattoos on incoming residents at the camp). Lale’s story is a remarkable one of struggle and survival, as well as of love for humanity. While in the camp, he managed to save lives by using the advantages of his station to smuggle food to other starving prisoners. In addition, in the concentration camp he met Gita, a young Slovakian woman, who became ‘the love of his life’, and with whom he promised to start anew together after the war. With many harrowing situations in which he nearly met his demise, Lale remarkably survived to share this fascinating story of courage and fortitude. Since I’d previously read other novels about the Holocaust, this story was fast-paced, but it seemed slightly lacking in detail. When I realized that the manuscript was originally designated as a screenplay and had been revised into a novel, I understood why the text was slightly less descriptive and contained ample amounts of dialogue. That being said, I didn’t find this novel to be the best representation of a Holocaust novel, but it was a very compelling one indeed!
  • (4/5)
    While this is a work of fiction, it is based on the life of the man & woman who lived the story. Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew is transported to the concentration camps of Auschwitz-Birkenau. Quickly he is noticed by the SS staff as a bright individual who speaks five languages. Knowledge of languages makes the work of sorting the man and women much fast and more efficient. Lale is given the job of tattooing his fellow prisoners.Soon he is smuggling food into the camp paid for with money & jewels given to him by incoming prisoners. When he is eventually caught, he escapes death by the narrowest of margins. On his first day as tattooist, he notices an attractive young woman who is also Slovakian. It is love at first sight and he works at making sure this woman named Gita survives by smuggling extra food to her and her friends. He even uses his influence to get her a better and safer job. They both survive the camps and the war and his search for her after the war ends happily when he finds her by pure hap-instance.While it is fiction and conversations in the text are from the imagination of the author, she did spend three years interviewing Lale to get the details of his experiences.As many books and articles I read and museums I visit on this subject, it still staggers my mind to think that humans could do the horrible things the SS did to these innocent people.
  • (2/5)
    I feel terrible for giving "The Tattooist of Auschwitz" such a low rating considering it was based on the true story of Lale Sokolov, however, it was not for the story itself, which was inspirational, but for the actual writing. All survivors of the Holocaust should have their stories heard, and Lale and Gita's grim determination to stay alive whilst prisoners of Auschwitz was truly amazing, but the writing left me cold. It was too simplistic and factual, and the dialogue never flowed naturally; it always felt stilted and forced. As characters, Lale and Gita were both very bland and poorly developed and, while their love story was touching, I never connected with either of them emotionally.Considering everything Lale and Gita endured and witnessed whilst in Auschwitz, there should have been far more atmosphere in this book than there was. The horror, desperation and fear they must have felt on a daily basis as they struggled for their existence in a place where hope was all but gone, were all missing. I was left unmoved and dispassionate as I came to the end of "The Tattooist of Auschwitz", and I thought the author did a disservice to their story.Gary, the son of Gita and Lale, wrote a short afterword and in those few pages I felt more emotion and was on the verge of tears more than I was anywhere else in the book. Sadly, I think Gary would have been better suited to write his parents' story.
  • (5/5)
    This was a novelized form of the true tale of Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew who is transported to Auschwitz-Birkenau. While there it is discovered that he speaks 5 languages so he is made to the be the camp's tattooist. While there is meets a trembling young woman waiting to be tattooed, Gita, prisoner 34902. Using his "privileged" position Lale steals jewels and trades them for food morsels which he doles out to others. This is a story of hope and humanity even in the darkest hour. One of the best Holocaust books I have read. 288 pages
  • (5/5)
    This book is a beautiful story of two people who met and fell in love under the worst possible circumstances and how that love brought them through. Lale was one of the kindest souls and would do anything that he could for anyone. Reading the authors notes you can see how even after all these years, Lale still loved Gita. In the epilogue just as much happened to the two of them as did thru the entire book. This is an excellent book!!
  • (4/5)
    The story behind The Tattooist of Auschwitz is interesting, as are most stories about life in concentration camps during WWII. Beyond that, there is nothing exceptional about this novel. The characters are not particularly developed and the prose is not noteworthy.
  • (2/5)
    This story is based on the real experiences of an Auschwitz survivor so it feels wrong to be critical but I don't think this book does the story justice. It may not even be the fault of the author since she can only go on what she was told by Lale, the source of the story and the main character. There are many novels and memoirs of Auschwitz and the unique element of this one should have been the viewpoint of a Jewish man in an unusual situation. As the person who tattooed identification numbers on the arms of his fellow Jews, he had an abhorrent job that also gave him a small amount of status (and, therefore, privileges) with the Nazis. But the book barely skims how this affects his experience. The author tries to create suspense about what will happen to Lale and Gita but, when the book jacket essentially confirms that both of them survive the concentration camp, those efforts fall flat. In the end, this book breaks little new ground among other Auschwitz stories, contains some hard-to-believe details, and fails to connect the reader to the characters.
  • (4/5)
    A remarkable, intricate, yet simple story woven together-- based on true events. The plot occurs during WW2 in Auschwitz and we encounter Lale, a man tasked with tattooing the various prisoners that come through. He falls in love, complications occur, and he tries to find a way for him-- and his lover, to escape. This is a war-torn story with all the elements of good fiction: heartache, loss, suffering, and (at the end) hope.4 stars.
  • (5/5)
    It's a comfort to know that despite of the bleak circumstances, they were still able to find love and hang on to hope. I couldn't put this book down. I couldn't bring myself to stop reading. It was such a powerful and unforgettable story.
  • (4/5)
    I read a lot of books in the genre and this one did not disappoint . . . . unfortunately, i didn't realize it was a true story (audio book) until the end of the book . . . . so as I was listening I found it to be a bit unrealistic and fragmented. Knowing it was a true story makes it believable (clearly), but I still think the writing could have been much better to really bring these important characters to life.
  • (3/5)
    "The Tattooist of Auschwitz" left me with mixed feelings and, honestly, my opinion of the novel still seems to be changing from hour to hour. It's not that author Heather Morris is a bad writer; she's not. It's more that she never really made me feel the true horror of what life was like in a WWII German concentration camp. Morris touched on all of the atrocities that occurred to those so unfortunate as to find themselves imprisoned by the Germans: the brutality, the depravities, murders, medical "experiments," rapes, starvation, the crematoriums, the forced labor, etc., it's all there. But the book's main character Lale Sokolov lived such a blessed existence in the camp despite all that was going on around him, that it's hard to shake the feeling that this is more a romance novel than a historical novel. (And, yes, the real Lale Sokolov chose Morris to tell his story and worked with her to produce it.)Bottom line, this is the story of a young Jewish man who fell instantly in love with one of the women he was tasked to tattoo an identification number on at Auschwitz. Lale became Gita's protector and advisor, managed to sneak her and her friends extra rations that he purchased from a civilian camp worker, and even got her the medicine that saved her life when it appeared that she had almost no chance of recovery. Theirs is a beautiful love story. That both survived and managed to find each other after the chaos of the death camp's liberation is a miracle. That all of this happened in the real world is simply astonishing, but I'm just not sure that the novel quite does justice to their story.
  • (4/5)
    It's a powerful story. It's a sad story, but there is hope within the sadness. Amidst the backdrop of World War II, Lale Sokolov leaves his home, believing that by doing so he is safeguarding the rest of his family. He ends up in Auschwitz-Birkenau. A Frenchman sets Lale up to be his assistant tattooist (putting the numbers on the arms of prisoners). Later, the Frenchman disappears without explanation, leaving Lale as the head tattooist. Lale attempts to use his position to help others. He finds an assistant in Leon (who disappears, reappears, and then disappears again). He gets girls who work in the warehouses (called The Canada) to steal money, gems, and jewelry which are passed on to him and which he in turn passes on to buy foods, medicines, and other items to help himself and others in the camps. Lale also finds love in the form of Gita--Gita is in the first group of women Lale sees brought to the concentration camp. Lale tattoos her arm. The lengths Lale goes to and the risks he takes to help others survive are both admirable and sad. It is heartening to see that there are people in the surrounding area who are willing to help those in the concentration camps even at risk to themselves. I'm sure they would have been imprisoned if they'd been discovered helping those in the camp. Once he finally escapes the Germans/Nazis, Lale thinks he'll surrender to the Russians. At first they ignore him, but then they put him to work as a "pimp"--a nicer form of slavery/imprisonment than what he had at the concentration camp but still, he is not free. He is better fed and better clothed and has access to a bathroom, but little freedom. Somehow, he still manages to squirrel away some money and gems and eventually, when he's gained the Russians' trust, he takes off for his homeland and to find Gita. Eventually, he and Gita move to Australia and make a life for themselves. Lale tells his story only after Gita passes away.
  • (4/5)
    A very moving story of a tragic time.An uplifting outcome.I understand why it is on bestseller lists!
  • (4/5)
    *I received this book through LibraryThing Early Reviewers.*The thing that really set this novel apart from other fiction centered around the Holocaust is that it is closely based on a true story and actual interviews with Lale, the protagonist of this story. Lale was a Slovakian Jew transported to Auschwitz in 1942 and he gained privileges in the camp by becoming the tattooist, the one who tattooed the incoming prisoners with the numbers assigned by the SS. While in the camps, he meets and falls in love with a fellow prisoner Gita and the two resolve to survive and build a future together. In many ways this is an endearing love story, but I did feel like the narrative got lost at times and in describing Lale's methods for smuggling food and other supplies into the camp, this book portrayed a slightly different picture of life in concentration camps than I'd encountered previously. Overall, an interesting book and definitely one to read for those interested in WWII fiction.
  • (4/5)
    I’ve read quite a bit about the Holocaust, but I believe this is the first time I have read about a romance in Auschwitz concentration camp. The camp is full of hunger, despair and fear -- not really the atmosphere that encourages amorous thoughts. Most prisoners were consumed with the need to survive. However, love is a powerful motivator for the will to survive.Lale Sokolov, a young man from Slovakia, was sent to Auschwitz to work. Fluent in several languages and possessing a charisma that others found appealing, Lale soon unwittingly lands the job of tattooing numbers onto the incoming prisoners. The freedom to move about the camp, extra rations and a better place to sleep set Lale apart from the other prisoners.Lale realizes the need to help others and soon uses his perks to get extra food and medicine to his fellow prisoners. In doing so, he soon meets Gita, the girl who will become the love of his life.Lale’s bravery during his time in the camp and immediately following the liberation is impressive. Also, the fact that both he and Gita survived until the liberation is a bit of a miracle. Both had brushes with death that they survived due to the kindness of others.This story is based on the life of real people, their pictures added at the end of the book, along with a brief update on their lives following the war. Many thanks to NetGalley, Bonnier Publishing Australia/Echo for providing me with an advance copy.
  • (3/5)
    A story of love overcoming the worst possible scenario. We all know the horrors of Auschwitz so no need to go over them again. The only problem I had with this book is the it seemed unreal. I can't believe one person can have as much "luck" as he did when no one else seemed to. From befriending his guard, to getting food from some workers in town, to getting his girlfriend an easier "job" in the office. There were just too many Lucky Instances to be. totally believable.
  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed this book. Lake Slovakian was a prisoner at one of the worst concentration camps in Europe, Auschwitz. I can’t even imagine what it must have like to be the one who tattoos the numbers on his fellow Jews. He does help people by getting them medicine and food they need. I read Geta book years ago and enjoyed it.
  • (5/5)
    Lale Sokolov (born Ludwig Eisenberg), born in Krompachy, Slovia in 1916, was transported by the Nazis to Auschwitz on April 23, 1942. He was 24, healthy, and could speak a number of languages, which proved very fortunate for him. In fact, as inappropriate as it seems to speak of an inmate of Nazi concentration camps having a lot of “luck,” the fact is that Lale, in spite of his circumstances, had an inordinate amount of it. Even one of the S.S. marveled he was like a cat with nine lives.Lale became a Tätowierer, or tattooist, for the camp, one of the men assigned to brand the prisoners when they arrived, just as was done to Lale when he came to Auschwitz. The Nazis used the tattoos to identify bodies after they killed them, in order to comply with their meticulous record-keeping showing who arrived and who was killed. Lale hated the job, but it was a way to keep alive, and he vowed when he came there that he would survive and see those who were responsible pay a price. He held on to that thought using it like a mantra to make himself get out of bed each morning, and the next and the next.He soon got another reason to go on living, after meeting a girl whose tattoo had faded and needed to be redone: Gita Furman (born Gisela Fuhrmannova) was also from Slovakia. Lale was entranced by her dark eyes, and began a secret courtship with her. He was helped by a number of factors. Because he was one of only two Tätowierers, he had more freedom than other prisoners, and even got extra rations. He was able to walk around and befriend two local workers, from whom he received meat, chocolate, and even medicine, for which he paid in jewels confiscated by the Nazis from incoming prisoners. He got those from the girls who worked in “Canada,” where the prisoners possessions were collected and processed. The girls transferred jewels and money to Lale, and he in turn got them what they needed. He was in this way able to help get Gita penicillin when she was sick and then obtain a job in the office where life would be easier for her. He also bribed the guard in charge of Gita’s barrack to get time to see her. He also helped anyone he could who needed it, and he was repaid in kind when he himself needed help. In this way both he and Gita survived until 1945, when the Russians were closing in and the Germans abandoned the camp. But first, the Nazis tried to kill remaining prisoners. Lale and Gita independently escaped and made their separate ways back to Slovakia.Lale went to the main train station in Bratislava every day, hoping to find Gita among the many survivors coming daily. And after two weeks, there she was. They were married in October, 1945. When he got into trouble with the new government in Czechoslovakia, again Lale got lucky, and he and Gita escaped, making their way to Australia in 1949.The author met Lale in 2003, after Gita died and when Lale wanted to tell his story to a writer who was not Jewish, so would more likely be without personal baggage or preconceptions. She visited Lale two or three times a week for three years until his own death in 2006 and gradually learned his story: “We had become friends - no, more than friends….” as she learned what happened sixty years before.Although the author decided to call this book a novel because she has created dialogue based on what Lale told her and because of the uncertainty of the veracity of memory, she states:“Lale’s memories were, on the whole, remarkably clear and precise. They matched my research into people, dates, and places.”She concludes:“The Tattooist of Auschwitz is a story of two ordinary people living in an extraordinary time, deprived not only of their freedom but also their dignity, their names, and their identities. It is Lale’s account of what they needed to do to survive. Lale lived his life by the motto: ‘If you wake up in the morning, it is a good day.’ On the morning of his funeral I woke knowing it was not a good day for me, but that it would have been for him. He was now with Gita.”I would only object that Lale and Gita were not, in fact, “ordinary.” As Lale said to Gita about her friend Cilka, who was forced to perform sexual acts with one of the SS, “Tell her I think she is a hero. . . You’re a hero, too, my darling. That the two of you have chosen to survive is a type of resistance to these Nazi bastards. Choosing to live is an act of defiance, a form of heroism.”Lale also, to me, was heroic, and extraordinary.The book includes photos and some additional information about the fate of others mentioned in the story.Evaluation: This powerful book of courage and hope when there is no justification to feel either is an incredible story, and highly recommended.
  • (5/5)
    Somewhere between the time I chose this book and the time I read this book (and despite the note on the cover) – I managed to forget that “The Tattooist of Auschwitz” is based on a true story. This beautiful, horrific, delicate, brutal story about World War II and one man’s experience in a concentration camp was truly a miracle. And when I reached the end and was reminded that this was actually based on true events? It seemed almost too amazing to be believed.Lale Sokolov, the true hero of this story, is an amazing human being and an incredible character to read about. While there are a few small (very) elements of luck in his journey to and life in a German concentration camp, what he endures, and the strength of his spirit, will to live, and love for not only a young girl he meets – but all people who need help – was more than inspiring. Somehow, he walks the incredibly delicate line between fighting to save his own life while doing his best to help anyone he can. In an atmosphere of constant watching and casual murder – there are few who can do so and still maintain some of who they once were. Lale seems to be one of these few.This is truly a remarkable story. To read of such care and love and grace – set against the most unimaginable cruelty and evil – it’s disconcerting at times. But as the reader gets a sense of who Lale is and how strong he is – the sense of hope builds. The feeling that maybe it just might be ok – somehow, some way.This is a beautiful book and an amazing story…and I am still shaking my head as I try to grapple with the fact that it really happened.
  • (3/5)
    An amazing story of survival and resilience, told in an undramatic way. The story is incredible--that two people met and fell in love at Auschwitz/Birkenau, that they managed to survive it all, and that they found each other after being separated as Auschwitz fell...! It would seem crazy if it were a work of fiction. For me, though, the writing was indifferent. Perhaps it's very difficult to make a true story fraught with horrors into a book that manages to convey the horror while not making it a sensationalist melodrama. And maybe I just don't have enough of an imagination. Nonetheless, somehow the writing wasn't vivid, and the story came across almost mundane. So not a bad piece of work, but not as gripping as I had expected.
  • (5/5)
    I loved this book even though it made my stomach turn and tears flow. The characters are beautiful inside and out. I was routing for Lale and Gita every page. A must read!
  • (5/5)
    This was such a great book for me. I loved the characters especially and sped right through it.I loved that, for the most part, the gas chambers, crematoriums and the other human atrocities were scenery. Not to say that it wasn't prevalent, but it wasn't the gist of the story.The story was about a man who did everything he could to save himself and still be able to live with himself. And, also what he could do for the people around him. He was responsible for saving many lives by sneaking in food, hiding people, etc., whatever it took.Such a great, great book! I loved it!!! A really strong feel good read, despite the atrocities, that had me speeding right through this one.Thanks to Bonnier Zaffre and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
  • (4/5)
    Reading books about The Holocaust are normally out of my comfort zone but this book intrigued me. It's the true story of Lale Sokolov and how he survived his time in Auschwitz. It's always hard to review on this subject. A time in our history that is never forgotten and should never happen again. I found the story very compelling and heart moving.There are so many words that could describe this book but for me there are two, hope and courage. Lale becomes the tattooist to survive and helps others as much as he can. I flew through the book which seemed a quick read and enjoyed it more than what I thought I would. It shows that even when there is the most cruelty there is always hope.