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The Nazi officer's wife : how one Jewish woman survived the Holocaust
Edith Hahn Beer
Adult Nonfiction DS135.A93 B44 1999

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From Publishers' Weekly:

In the 1930s, Edith Hahn was studying law at university, in love with her boyfriend and living with her close-knit, nonobservant Jewish family in Vienna. Her idyllic life ended abruptly when the Nazis took over, and she was sent to a labor camp in Germany. After obtaining permission to return to Vienna-and discovering that her mother was no longer there-Edith went underground and lived in terror as a fugitive until a Christian friend let her use her papers to create a fake identity. Incredibly, a Nazi Party member fell in love with her and married her, even after she told him her true identity, and she spent the rest of the war pretending to be an ordinary German hausfrau. Audie Award-winner Rosenblat gives a compelling performance in the first-person role of Edith. She narrates the story in a light Austrian accent, which lends a ring of authenticity to her reading. At times, Rosenblat seems to become Edith: sighing with regret over a lost love, chuckling over a girlhood prank, her voice filled with hatred as she speaks of the Nazis and with pure terror when she comes close to being discovered. Indeed, readers might easily forget that this absorbing narrative is a memoir, not a novel. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Beer grows up an assimilated Jew in pre-Nazi Vienna; she even attends law school and plans to be a judge. She falls in love with another secular Jew and plans a happy life; then she is expelled, first from school, then from all normal activities. To survive, she adopts the identity of a Christian friend, becoming a "U boat" (a Jew hiding among Nazis). The author then falls in love with a Nazi; they marry, and she becomes Grete, the perfect Third Reich hausfrau and mother, even though her husband knows that she is Jewish. After the war, the real Edith emerges and works as a judge. She rescues her husband from a labor camp, but he doesn't want her anymore, because she is no longer a subservient wife and their child is a Jew. Eventually Beer and her daughter move to England. This is a factual retelling, not an introspective autobiography. Does Beer have any survivor's or collaborator's guilt? For this recording, the talented Barbara Rosenblat uses a clear, slightly accented English enunciation that just matches Beer's Viennese background. Partially because this book has also been made into a movie, it is likely to be a more popular choice than other, perhaps more thoughtful, Holocaust narratives. Recommended for moderate to large Judaica libraries and large academic or public libraries.-I. Pour-El, Des Moines Area Community Coll., Boone, IA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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