Friday 18 September 2015

Review: Surviving the Angel of Death by Eva Mozes Kor and Lisa Rojany Buccieri

Surviving the Angel of Death by Eva Mozes Kor and Lisa Rojany Buccieri
Publisher: Tanglewood
Release date: 15 October 2009
Rating: ****
Back cover blurb: Eva Mozes Kor was just 10 years old when she arrived in Auschwitz. While her parents and two older sisters were taken to the gas chambers, she and her twin, Miriam, were herded into the care of the man known as the Angel of Death, Dr. Josef Mengele. Subjected to sadistic medical experiments, she was forced to fight daily for her and her twin's survival. In this incredible true story written for young adults, readers will learn of a child's endurance and survival in the face of truly extraordinary evil. The book also includes an epilogue on Eva's recovery from this experience and her remarkable decision to publicly forgive the Nazis.Through her museum and her lectures, she has dedicated her life to giving testimony on the Holocaust, providing a message of hope for people who have suffered, and working for causes of human rights and peace.

Eva Mozes was just Ten years old when she and her twin sister, Miriam arrived at Auschwitz-Birkenau. Her parents and two elder sisters were never seen again, presumably they were taken immediately to the gas chambers following the arrival selection process employed by the Nazis at that time.

Eva and Miriam were only saved by their genetics, and were immediately housed with other twins to be ‘looked after’ by Dr. Josef Mengele, now more commonly known as the Angel of Death.

What they suffered during their time there was nothing short of brutal. Twins were subjected to all kinds of horrific experiments by Mengele whose ultimate goal was to create blonde hair, blue eyed twins without any flaws. A goal that was never achieved. When Eva is injected with a substance that leaves her fighting for her life, she is more determined than ever to survive – she will not let Mengele win.

Her bravery is nothing short of tremendous, bearing in mind her young age, it is a determination that led to her and her twin being able to survive Auschwitz alive, when so many weren’t able to achieve the same goal.

What I really loved about this novel, was not only the authors honesty, but her willingness to share her life after the war. So often these types of autobiographical novels only deal with the events of the time and leave us wondering the author’s fate.

Eva went on to marry and moved to Terre Haute in the USA, where she (with the help of Miriam) launched CANDLES (Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiments Survivors) to try and find other survivors before going on to open CANDLES holocaust museum and education centre.

Eva is a truly inspirational lady and this is a must read.

Surviving the Angel of Death is available from Amazon online.

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Thank you to the publishers who approved my request via netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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