New Books 2014-15



Elsewhere, Perhaps (Amos Oz) - Situated only two miles from a hostile border, Amos Oz’s fictional community of Metsudat Ram is a microcosm of the Israeli frontier kibbutz. There, held together by necessity and menace, the kibbutzniks share love and sorrow under the guns of their enemies and the eyes of history.


Fima (Amos Oz)  -Fima lives in Jerusalem, but feels he ought to be somewhere else. In his life he has had secret love affairs, good ideas, and written a book of poems that aroused expectations. He has thought about the purpose of the universe and where the country lost its way. He has felt longings of all sorts, and the constant desire to pen a new chapter. And here he is now, in his early fifties in a shabby apartment on a gloomy wet morning, engaged in a humiliating struggle to release his shirt from the zipper of his fly. With wit and insight, Amos Oz portrays a man—and a generation—dreaming noble dreams but doing nothing.



Tunes for Bears to Dance to (Robert Cormier) - A masterful portrayal of hatred, prejudice and manipulation that challenges readers to examine how they would behave in the face of evil. Henry meets and befriends Mr. Levine, an elderly Holocaust survivor, who is carving a replica of the village where he lived and which was destroyed in the war. Henry's friendship with Mr. Levine is put to the test when his prejudiced boss, Mr. Hairston, asks Henry to destroy Mr. Levine's village.




All But My Life (Gerda Weissman Klein) - All But My Life is the unforgettable story of Gerda Weissmann Klein's six-year ordeal as a victim of Nazi cruelty. From her comfortable home in Bielitz (present-day Bielsko) in Poland to her miraculous survival and her liberation by American troops--including the man who was to become her husband--in Volary, Czechoslovakia, in 1945, Gerda takes the reader on a terrifying journey.,204,203,200_.jpg

What Happened to the Children who Fled Nazi Persecution (Sonnert) - This book is the result of a four-year, in-depth study using social science methodology of those refugees who came as children or youths from Central Europe to the United States during the 1930s and 1940s, fleeing persecution from the National Socialist regime. This study examines their fates in their new country, their successes and tribulations.,0,214,317_AL_.jpg

Nazi Officer’s Wife (Beer) - Edith Hahn was an outspoken young woman in Vienna when the Gestapo forced her into a ghetto and then into a slave labor camp. When she returned home months later, she knew she would become a hunted woman and went underground. With the help of a Christian friend, she emerged in Munich as Grete Denner. There she met Werner Vetter, a Nazi Party member who fell in love with her. Despite Edith's protests and even her eventual confession that she was Jewish, he married her and kept her identity a secret.

Destruction of the European Jews (Hilberg) - This student edition of The Destruction of the European Jews makes accessible for classroom use Raul Hilberg s landmark account of Germany s annihilation of Europe s Jewish communities in 1933 1945. Perhaps more than any other book, it answers the question: How did it happen?,204,203,200_.jpg

A Lucky Child (Buergenthal) - In a new edition of his bestselling memoir, Thomas Buergenthal tells of his astonishing experiences as a young boy. Buergenthal arrived at Auschwitz at age 10 after surviving two ghettos and one work camp. Separated from his mother and then his father, he managed by his wits and some remarkable strokes of luck to survive on his own. Almost two years after his liberation, Buergenthal was miraculously reunited with his mother and in 1951 arrived in the U.S. to start a new life.

From Hell to Here (Hochman)  This book gives us a firsthand account of human strength and perseverance. Mr. Hochman has since lived his life as a model citizen, doing great things to give to the community in which he lives. For a person to be treated so badly by other humans, it is amazing that he shares his story with the world. He is a genuine, honorable, extraordinary human being. He holds no bitterness against those who could have destroyed his life. He chose to live life. The book tells the story of his survival. The way he lives his life tells the story of the amazing heart this man possesses.,204,203,200_.jpg

The Girls of Room 28 (Brenner) - Brenner, a Berlin-based journalist, focuses on 10 former child survivors, women in their late 70s, who went through the Theresienstadt concentration camp during the Holocaust. She notes that 12,000 children entered the camp from 1942 to 1944, but only a few hundred survived to war's end, and a handful of women of Room 28 in the camp's Girls' Home, now scattered around the world, reunited for the first time in 1991. The insights of the survivors and stories of the camp's victims are unforgettable and full of poignant humanity, conveyed through letters, photos, diaries and remembrances. Forced into exile and almost certain death under the Nazi regime, the children confronted hunger, cold, terror and the soul's endurance as many of the girls of Room 28 were slowly eliminated; the small band of survivors is committed to keeping their memory alive. Well-detailed and inspiring, Brenner's book, especially her heartfelt epilogue, pays glowing tribute to these heroic survivors.

Witness (Greene) - Textbooks and historical accounts can provide a broad view of the Holocaust, but nothing can come close to the power of the testimony of those who were there. As Holocaust scholar Lawrence Langer writes in his introduction to this collage of first-hand accounts, "Without survivor testimony, the human dimension of the catastrophe would remain a subject of speculation." For more than two decades, the Fortunoff Video Archive at Yale University has been videotaping the oral histories of Holocaust survivors and eyewitnesses. This extraordinary project has resulted in a documentary that will air on PBS in April and in this companion book. Editors Greene, a filmmaker, and Kumar, a scholar specializing in ethics and morality in global TV production, have woven together the testimonies of 27 individuals into an unforgettable narrative of the Holocaust: starting with pre-WWII Jewish life, they go on to describe the war's outbreak, ghettos, resistance and hiding, death camps, death marches, liberation and life after the Holocaust. Through careful selection and sequencing, the editors have succeeded in their goal: "to edit without editorializing." These painfully sad testimonies speak for themselves, providing the horrific details of people's experiences.,204,203,200_.jpg

Refuge in Hell (Silver) - When Soviet troops liberated the Jewish Hospital in Berlin in April 1945, they found 800 Jewish doctors, nurses, and patients that had survived there during World War II. The hospital's director was Dr. Walter Lustig, a German-born Jew, who had been baptized and married an Aryan woman. His ties to the notorious Adolf Eichmann were the reason that the hospital remained open. Lustig compiled lists of Jews--both staff members and patients--for deportation to concentration camps. He was later executed by the Soviets, purportedly for collaborating with the Nazis. Much of the book centers on the complex character of Lustig and whether he should be lauded for keeping many of the Jews alive or condemned for sending many of them to their deaths. Silver was able to locate and interview a number of survivors. He also relied on the work of scholars who had researched the history of the hospital. The result is a graphic account of a little-known episode in the Holocaust.

Does the Soul Survive? Spitz) - With a blend of candor, personal questioning and sharp-eyed scholarship, Rabbi Elie Kaplan Spitz relates his own observations and the firsthand accounts shared with him by others, experiences that helped propel his journey from skeptic to believer that there is life after life.

From near-death experiences to reincarnation, past-life memory to the work of mediums, Rabbi Spitz explores what we are really able to know about the afterlife, and draws on Jewish texts to share that belief in these concepts―so often approached with reluctance―is in fact true to Jewish tradition.,204,203,200_.jpg

Zookeeper’s Wife (Ackerman) - After their zoo was bombed, Polish zookeepers Jan and Antonina Zabinski managed to save over three hundred people from the Nazis by hiding refugees in the empty animal cages. With animal names for these "guests," and human names for the animals, it's no wonder that the zoo's code name became "The House Under a Crazy Star." Best-selling naturalist and acclaimed storyteller Diane Ackerman combines extensive research and an exuberant writing style to re-create this fascinating, true-life story―sharing Antonina's life as "the zookeeper's wife," while examining the disturbing obsessions at the core of Nazism. Winner of the 2008 Orion Award.


Elie Wiesel A Voice for Humanity (Stern) - Few Holocaust survivors have gained the recognition and honor as Elie Wiesel has as an author, journalist and lecturer. In this latest biography Ellen Stern chronicles the remarkable life of Elie Wiesel.





Life Between Memory and Hope (Mankowitz) - Zeev W. Mankowitz tells the remarkable story of the 250,000 survivors of the Holocaust who converged on the American Zone of Occupied Germany from 1945 to 1948. The survivors were ordinary people who had lived through experiences that beggar description. Despite the fact that they had often lost everything and everyone, they got on with their lives and worked for a better future. Using largely inaccessible archival material and with the help of illuminating illustrations, Mankowitz gives a moving and sensitive account of this special community of Holocaust survivors.




History on Trial (Lipstadt) - In her acclaimed 1993 book Denying the Holocaust, Deborah Lipstadt called putative WWII historian David Irving "one of the most dangerous spokespersons for Holocaust denial." A prolific author of books on Nazi Germany who has claimed that more people died in Ted Kennedy's car at Chappaquiddick than in the gas chambers at Auschwitz, Irving responded by filing a libel lawsuit in the United Kingdom -- where the burden of proof lies on the defendant, not on the plaintiff. At stake were not only the reputations of two historians but the record of history itself.








I was There (Richter) - A young German boy narrates his experiences in the Hitler youth movement during the early years of the Third Reich.



Shadows in Twilight (Daniels) - Shadows in Twilight is the true story of a twelve-year-old Jewish boy and his will to survive despite the horrors of World War II. The young reader is immediately drawn into the moving, often astonishing reality of the adult world. One cannot help but identify with the author’s dilemmas, joy sorrow, and fear. His heroic courage and endurance will surely inspire today’s youth.,204,203,200_.jpg

The Shadow Children (Schnur) - Gr. 4-7. Etienne has always spent idyllic summers on his grand-pere's small farm near a French village in the years after World War II. But the summer Etienne turns 11, he loses his innocence after discovering a terrible secret. He learns that thousands of Jewish refugee children once found shelter there, but when the Nazis came, the villagers--including his grandfather--abandoned the children and let the Germans take them away. On one level, this is a suspenseful ghost story: who are the ragged children hiding in the woods? Why is Etienne the only one who sees them and hears their sobbing? On a deeper level, it's a story of haunting guilt. It's as if the boy is seeing his grand-pere's guilty memories, including the clashing transport trains that took the children away forever. The prose is spare and beautiful, and the expressive charcoal illustrations move from the warm affection of the present to the shadowy horror that won't go away.,204,203,200_.jpg

Menorah in the Night Sky (Shore) - A beautifully illustrated children's book, Menorah in the Night Sky by Jacques J.M Shore, draws on the miraculous events of Chanukah - the Festival of Lights - and tells the meaningful, yet simple story of two young boys, best friends in a lonely camp during the Holocaust, whose faith and hope brings them their own Chanukah miracle. 
Separated from their families and far from their homes, Zev and David look to the stars to provide the spark of light in place of the nightly Menorah candle. On the first night, they pin their hopes on a lone star, and wait eagerly for the next night, to see if their Chanukah miracle will come true. 

A story of friendship and light, full of warmth and hope, richly illustrated and vividly told, Menorah in the Night Sky brings Zev and David to life, and illuminates the value of hope and the miracle of faith, in a way that all children, and their parents too, will enjoy.