Reviews for The sisters of Auschwitz : the true story of two Jewish sisters' resistance in the heart of Nazi territory

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Moving true story of two sisters who survivedand resistedthe Holocaust.Van Iperens narrative revolves around the house that she and her family restored, the High Nest, a remarkable Dutch country home that served as a nerve center of anti-Nazi resistance and housed several Jews during the frightening years of German occupation. At the center of the story of their home is the tale of Jewish sisters Janny and Lien Brilleslijper, whose courage, resilience, and strong sense of hope touched many lives during a time of atrocity. The author captures this important piece of Holocaust history with exceptional skill and nuance, allowing readers to feel a personal kinship with the individuals that populate the narrative. The author takes readers on a journey from one moving chapter to another as the Nazi grip on Hollands Jews grew tighter and tighter. While Jewish rights were stripped away and increasing numbers of families were shipped to ghettos or deported to camps, the Brilleslijper sisters provided significant aid to the Dutch resistance, overseeing an underground press, organizing a black market of necessary goods and lifesaving documentation, and hiding those on the run. Eventually, the residents of the High Nest were discovered and shipped to the Westerbork Transit Camp, followed by Auschwitz, where almost all of them were killed upon arrival. As the Soviet army approached, the sisters were moved to Bergen-Belsen, where they came extraordinarily close to meeting the same fate as another pair of sisters they befriended, Margot and Anne Frank. The authors attention to detail makes the horrors of the Holocaust come to lifenot only the physical horrors of the camps, but also the emotional and mental torment of life spent in fear and hiding. The ending, though happy, proves bittersweet in contrast to the incomprehensible scale of torment and death of the era.A truly worthwhile addition to the body of Holocaust studies. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Moving true story of two sisters who survived—and resisted—the Holocaust. Van Iperen’s narrative revolves around the house that she and her family restored, the High Nest, a remarkable Dutch country home that served as a nerve center of anti-Nazi resistance and housed several Jews during the frightening years of German occupation. At the center of the story of their home is the tale of Jewish sisters Janny and Lien Brilleslijper, whose courage, resilience, and strong sense of hope touched many lives during a time of atrocity. The author captures this important piece of Holocaust history with exceptional skill and nuance, allowing readers to feel a personal kinship with the individuals that populate the narrative. The author takes readers on a journey from one moving chapter to another as the Nazi grip on Holland’s Jews grew tighter and tighter. While Jewish rights were stripped away and increasing numbers of families were shipped to ghettos or deported to camps, the Brilleslijper sisters provided significant aid to the Dutch resistance, overseeing an underground press, organizing a black market of necessary goods and lifesaving documentation, and hiding those on the run. Eventually, the residents of the High Nest were discovered and shipped to the Westerbork Transit Camp, followed by Auschwitz, where “almost all” of them were “killed upon arrival.” As the Soviet army approached, the sisters were moved to Bergen-Belsen, where they came extraordinarily close to meeting the same fate as another pair of sisters they befriended, Margot and Anne Frank. The author’s attention to detail makes the horrors of the Holocaust come to life—not only the physical horrors of the camps, but also the emotional and mental torment of life spent in fear and hiding. The ending, though happy, proves bittersweet in contrast to the incomprehensible scale of torment and death of the era. A truly worthwhile addition to the body of Holocaust studies. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Moving true story of two sisters who survivedand resistedthe Holocaust.Van Iperens narrative revolves around the house that she and her family restored, the High Nest, a remarkable Dutch country home that served as a nerve center of anti-Nazi resistance and housed several Jews during the frightening years of German occupation. At the center of the story of their home is the tale of Jewish sisters Janny and Lien Brilleslijper, whose courage, resilience, and strong sense of hope touched many lives during a time of atrocity. The author captures this important piece of Holocaust history with exceptional skill and nuance, allowing readers to feel a personal kinship with the individuals that populate the narrative. The author takes readers on a journey from one moving chapter to another as the Nazi grip on Hollands Jews grew tighter and tighter. While Jewish rights were stripped away and increasing numbers of families were shipped to ghettos or deported to camps, the Brilleslijper sisters provided significant aid to the Dutch resistance, overseeing an underground press, organizing a black market of necessary goods and lifesaving documentation, and hiding those on the run. Eventually, the residents of the High Nest were discovered and shipped to the Westerbork Transit Camp, followed by Auschwitz, where almost all of them were killed upon arrival. As the Soviet army approached, the sisters were moved to Bergen-Belsen, where they came extraordinarily close to meeting the same fate as another pair of sisters they befriended, Margot and Anne Frank. The authors attention to detail makes the horrors of the Holocaust come to lifenot only the physical horrors of the camps, but also the emotional and mental torment of life spent in fear and hiding. The ending, though happy, proves bittersweet in contrast to the incomprehensible scale of torment and death of the era.A truly worthwhile addition to the body of Holocaust studies. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Moving true story of two sisters who survived—and resisted—the Holocaust. Van Iperen’s narrative revolves around the house that she and her family restored, the High Nest, a remarkable Dutch country home that served as a nerve center of anti-Nazi resistance and housed several Jews during the frightening years of German occupation. At the center of the story of their home is the tale of Jewish sisters Janny and Lien Brilleslijper, whose courage, resilience, and strong sense of hope touched many lives during a time of atrocity. The author captures this important piece of Holocaust history with exceptional skill and nuance, allowing readers to feel a personal kinship with the individuals that populate the narrative. The author takes readers on a journey from one moving chapter to another as the Nazi grip on Holland’s Jews grew tighter and tighter. While Jewish rights were stripped away and increasing numbers of families were shipped to ghettos or deported to camps, the Brilleslijper sisters provided significant aid to the Dutch resistance, overseeing an underground press, organizing a black market of necessary goods and lifesaving documentation, and hiding those on the run. Eventually, the residents of the High Nest were discovered and shipped to the Westerbork Transit Camp, followed by Auschwitz, where “almost all” of them were “killed upon arrival.” As the Soviet army approached, the sisters were moved to Bergen-Belsen, where they came extraordinarily close to meeting the same fate as another pair of sisters they befriended, Margot and Anne Frank. The author’s attention to detail makes the horrors of the Holocaust come to life—not only the physical horrors of the camps, but also the emotional and mental torment of life spent in fear and hiding. The ending, though happy, proves bittersweet in contrast to the incomprehensible scale of torment and death of the era. A truly worthwhile addition to the body of Holocaust studies. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

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