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September 14, 2022

The Daughter of Auschwitz by Tova Friedman & Malcolm Brabant ~ an Audiobook Review

by Donna Huber

The Daughter of Auschwitz
 is Tova Friedman's memoir. She has the distinction of possibly being the youngest survivor of the notorious death camp Auschwitz. She was just a year old when war broke out. She was 4-years-old when her family moved into the Jewish Ghetto. She was 5-years-old when she and her family were sent to Auschwitz and just 6-years-old when the camp was liberated.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free audiobook was provided for an honest review.

book cover of Holocaust memoir The Daughter of Auschwitz by Tova Friedman
September 2022; Harlequin Audio; 9781488215698
audio (7h 53m), ebook, print; memoir

Since I read a lot of WWII fiction, I've started seeking out nonfiction titles and fictional stories that cover aspects of the era that I might not have heard. 

The Daughter of Auschwitz is unique in the fact that Tova (she is Tola in the book as that was her childhood name) is such a young child during the war. Her memoir details her life after the war as well.

This is a hard book to listen to. It's not that I wasn't aware of the horrors that occurred in the ghettos and camps, but it was the fact that a child was witnessing it. She mentions how she helped her parents helped carry bodies to graves dug by her father after the Germans had massacred members of the ghetto. She says she could do much because she was so young but she did what she could - lift a leg, cradle a head.

Can you imagine telling your five-year-old that she needed to behave in a way so that she wasn't shot? How many 5-year-olds do you know have enough control to only go to the bathroom twice a day? Or stand in a line, outside, without fidgeting for an hour?

In a lot of ways Tola was way more mature than her age. But she also kept some of her innocence and so spared some of the fear that the adults leaved with. 

One of the reasons I like reading stories from WWII is because I love stories of people overcoming adversity and the human spirit enduring. And Friedman has embraced this and has thrived. In that sense this is a story of hope as well as resilience.

The audiobook is well done. Saskia Maarleveld is excellent as the narrator. Her voice is easy on the ear and I easily followed the story.

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

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