Thursday, 1 March 2007

The Lost

Lately I've been thinking that I haven't posted for a while, and needed to sit down and catch up on things. About a month ago my computer died and last weekend we went out and got another one, so I am now the proud owner of a Mac! And very lovely it is too. I will need to get accustomed to the way things are done in MacWorld, as I haven't used an Apple in the last 10 years!

So what have I been reading lately?

Well I did a reader review on a book called "The Lost" that is coming out in Australia soon. It is by Daniel Mendelsohn, and I believe that it is already published in the US. It is about the authors search for the true story behind the members of his family that perished in the Holocaust. The family originated in a small town (shetl) is what is now the Ukraine. The authors grandfather and some other siblings emigrated to the US and Israel, however one brother returned to the hometown, and it is he, his wife and four daughters that perished. But how? No one knows exactly, there are stories, but the author seeks to find the truth. He travels to the Ukraine, Australia, Israel, and Stockholm in a bid to talk to the survivors from that town, be they Jewish, Polish or Ukrainian. Through his interviews he hears many harrowing stories of those that perished and those that survived. After all, as one elderly woman says, "You didn't survive those times without terrible stories to tell". We also learn alot about the way the three cultures Jewish, Polish and Ukrainian lived together. He also goes into some detail about Judaism. He explains some of the meaninngs behind the traditions, and the relevance of the Bible. I found some of this part interesting, but a bit too detailed, however as a great publishing idea, these portions of the book are italisized, so you could easily skip over them (although I didn't - that's just not me!) There are also some lovely memories of his treasured grandfather and other relations that are very touching.

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