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I Have Lived a Thousand Years: Growing Up in the Holocaust (Elli Friedmann #1)

4.17 of 5 stars 4.17  ·  rating details  ·  11,465 ratings  ·  542 reviews
The intimate and haunting memoir of a teenager who survived the Nazi death campsThirteen-year-old Elli Friedmann's life was changed forever when the Nazis invaded her homeland of Hungary. In excruciating and immediate detail, the author describes her descent into the hell of Auschwitz and recounts what it was like to be one of the few teenaged camp inmates. Through a serie ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published April 1st 1997 by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (first published January 1st 1997)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Terrie
This might be one of the best Holocaust books I have read. A true account of the author as a 13 year old from Hungary sent to Auschwitz and then Dachau. Violent, haunting, grisly, hopeful, brave, and astonishing. A lump in your throat, tears rolling down your cheeks account that makes you count your blessings. Thank you Mrs. Hancock and 6th grade for recommending this life changing book.
Barbara
Jun 10, 2014 Barbara rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Barbara by: Chrissie
I cannot resist the urge to compare and contrast this book with Shanghai Diary: A Young Girl's Journey from Hitler's Hate to War-Torn China, which I read prior to this one. Both are written in the first-person perspective of a young teen during the Holocaust. Although their situations differed markedly, both were wrenched from their homes, stripped of personal properties, separated from loved ones and confined in inhumane situations. In Shanghai, the family had chosen to immigrate to avoid maltr ...more
Kathryn
What sets Bitton-Jackson's Holocaust memoir apart from the others is that it is simultaneously poetic and graphic. Also, the entire book is written in the first-person which gives it a startling immediacy.

It has garnered hundreds of deservedly glowing reviews, both here and on Amazon, so I won't take the trouble of summarizing it but the following sections hit me upside the head:

Her short-lived joyful ethnic pride that she discovered in the Jewish ghetto:

"For the first time in my life, I am hap
...more
Chrissie
I have to stop reading holocaust books....... The one I am reading now is a YA book, but I think it is one of the most gripping I have ever read. With little details the author puts you there in the concentration camp, naked, without clothes, in the showers, having your hair shorn off, being served soup filled with white squirming worms........No other holocaust book has done this to me so grittingly. I AM THERE. These are not just words on a page. You are equally torn when the Nazis take her ne ...more
Victor
The first time I visited a synagogue, it was with a group of students and Ms Livia Bitton-Jackson was our teacher in Lehman College , the Bronx, New York, 1998. Ms Bitton-Jackson told us the story of that pretty picture of her on the cover of the book. It was a miracle. She no longer had any possessions after having lived for a long period in concentration camp. A time when she often shared raw potatoes secretly with the other prisoners. Years after the war, she visited Poland and found a place ...more
Grace
Once I started reading this book, I just couldn't put it down. Bitton-Jackson's frank and compelling memoir details the loss of her childhood to the Holocaust, surviving the concentration camps, and finding her way back home with her mother and brother, only to find everything destroyed (except for the jewelry buried in the basement), and her father dead, two weeks before liberation.

She was just a girl, 13 years old, with blonde hair and green blue eyes, who could easily pass as a non-Jew. A me
...more
Art
At 13, Livia Bitton-Jackson finds hope and miracles while journeying through the massive horror of the Holocaust. She reminded me to pause to listen to people who have stories that must be told. And to not turn away from injustices.
Dayja
"I Have Lived a Thousand Years" is a novel writen about the writers first hand experience as a thirteen year old girl who had to live through the holocaust.
Livia Bitton-Jackson shows the reader, in depth, about her experience during the holocaust. From beginning to end the book is told in her piont of view as the events happen. While you read you get to see what she is seeing and can pactically feel what she is feeling, almost as if you were there. I believe this is why she wrote the book, to l
...more
Heather
This was such a heartbreaking story, as I knew it would be. And yet, among all the horrors thirteen year old Elli was enduring, was her strength and her incredible will to survive. I was just amazed at her strength! I honestly don't know, had I been in her place, if I could have been so strong.

I thought Elli's voice set a perfect tone for this book and the telling of her story. She writes very simply, and yet her words pack a huge punch. You can really hear the poet in her come through in her w
...more
Joy
Oct 15, 2007 Joy rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all my friends
I just previewed this book to see if I could recommend it to my students, as we are currently studying the Holocaust. I have read many books on the Holocaust, but this one especially moved me. Perhaps because it is written by a woman (Livia Bitton-Jackson)who endured Auschwitz and various other camps when she was only thirteen years old. Livia's perspective is especially poignant. When liberated, a German civilian approached her and expressed amazement that someone her age could have survived. W ...more
Catherine
I just finished reading I Have Lived a Thousand Years: Growing up in the Holocaust by Livia Bitton-Jackson. This is a well written memoir that reminds me of Elie Wiesel's Night. I've thought about her book all night and into this morning and wonder how anyone survived Hitler's killing machine. I can't comprehend how other humans could treat people the way Jackson and her family were treated. She talks about how their treatment was designed to reduced from individuals into a mass of grey uniforms ...more
Janet
This is a true story about a brilliant, stoic, and brave young Jewish girl from Hungary who lived through the devastation of concentration camps in the Holocaust. Pain, ridicule, hunger, starvation, thirst, abuse, torture, are just some of what she and her family endured. It is a miracle that she survived to write her story. I couldn't put this book down.
Kelsey Hanson
This was another stirring but heartbreaking book that covers a young girl's life during the Holocaust. This book follows the author's journey from concentration camp to concentration camp until her liberation at the end of the war. The descriptions are shocking and there are many tragic moments, but the author and her family's will to endure is truly inspiring. The only real complaint that I have is that I wish there could have been some sort of epilogue that describes what happened to the autho ...more
Janet Damon
One of the best memoirs I have every read about a young girl's survival during the Holocaust. The book covers the systematic atrocities of the Holocaust from stripping Jewish families of their homes and possessions, rounding them up for relocation, the fear and terror in every moment and yet this child has continual hope. As situation worsens she struggles to keep her mother from giving in to despair. There were moments of sheer panic as the lines form for the gas chamber and you hold your breat ...more
Angela
Horrifying and extremely sad memoir details the loss of her childhood to the Holocaust, surviving the concentration camps, and finding her way back home with her mother and brother, only to find everything destroyed (except for the jewelry buried in the basement), and her father dead, two weeks before liberation.

She was just a girl, 13 years old, with blonde hair and green blue eyes, who could easily pass as a non-Jew. A member of the SS actually asked her if she was Jewish and then advised her
...more
Adeena
this book was a great primary source to the inside of concentration camps during the world war 2. this book is narrated by a girl named eli. eli and her family end up being sent to concentration camps. her dad gets killed at a death camp,she and her mom always find the way to escape gas chambers, shooting lines while the majority of her family is dead. this book reveals how the germans took advance of their trust and violated their rights of being human. in the end eli and her family return to a ...more
Eric
Mar 07, 2012 Eric rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: educators, teachers, holocaust researchers, students
Recommended to Eric by: English 400- Remembering the Holocaust @Ball State University
I wouldn't state that this was one of my favorite books that I have read recently about the Holocaust, but I would state it is the one that was able to draw out some emotions in myself. It reminded me of some of my own experiences in life, which helped me to understand this particular era in a more profound way than I had before reading it. I had to ultimately realize that the writing style of this book was geared towards a younger audience than myself because that was my main gripe with it that ...more
Kristal


Kristal Mr.Nourok 904, 9B
Without hope we can’t move forward:

A Book Review of I Have Lived A Thousand Years

I Have Lived a Thousand Years am a powerful, beautiful and a strong book. The book is about the author Elli, when she was a thirteen year old Jewish girl living in Hungary, is shocked when she finds out that the Jewish community including her family are being taken out of their home to be rounded up, to go to a concentration camp. Elli loses the people she is fond of, has to deal with c
...more
Ianm
I Have lived a thousand years by Livia Bitton Jackson

My book review is on the book I have lived a thousand years. The book was about Eli Freedman a Jewish girl growing up in the Holocaust. In the book she is just living her life and then all of the sudden Nazis take her out of her home and bring her to the gehtoes. From there she is taken to a concentration camp that is even worse. Jewish people are killed everyday in the camp to make room for new coming Jewish people. She never knows if she is
...more
Erin
It is impossible to say you enjoyed a book such as this. This book is too bittersweet and heartbreaking to say you enjoyed it. I can say that it moved me.

Elli lived in Czechoslovakia in 1944, along with her brother, mother and father, when Germany invaded their homeland. After having to leave school, part with valuables and wear yellow stars on their clothing they are sent to a ghetto. Shortly after they are sent to concentration camps and split up. The story tells all from the beginning when Ge
...more
Denise DeSio
Horrifying Memoir

I've read quite a number of Holocaust stories in my long life, and I Have Lived a Thousand Years, by Livia Britton-Jackson sits with all the others in terms of corroborating the terrible atrocities inflicted on the Jews in the concentration camps. And belive me, the author spares us no atrocity from verbal humiliation to physical torture, to the outright killing of human beings.

The first person narrative told by a witness is powerful, but the audiobook version seems to magnify
...more
Zanna
Content notes to help you decide whether to read or recommend this book:

The author was 13 and living in a Hungarian town in Czechoslovakia at the start of her memoir and she was 14 at the end of the war. She would have been murdered on arrival at Auschwitz if the man sorting the adult women from the elderly and children had not liked the look of her blonde hair and told her 'you're sixteen now'. She must have been one of the youngest survivors of the camps.

As well as being in Auschwitz twice in
...more
Rebecca Weimert
Rebecca Weimert
Biography

I Have Lived a Thousand Years is a memoir of Elli Friedmann (who later changed her name to Livia) who was 13 when her family was taken to concentration camps during WWII. Her father was taken first, then her brother, and aunt. Elli and her mother are saved when a solider, who thinks she is older than 16 and loves her blonde hair and blue eyes, picks the pair to go to a working camp. While in the camp Elli learns the true meaning of hate, but is relieved when the war is ov
...more
Linda Trionfo
If you are WWII buff like me you have to read this. I read it with the impression that it is another book about concentration camp life and eventually the liberation. But I was so impressed by her abilty to tell a story recalling what it was like as 13 year old going through it all. I was oddley unemotional through it all, all the things you have read before or seen about Death and labor camps, but her expirences and determantion were incrediable. When they were liberated I read it like any othe ...more
Robert Kiehn
This book is a great but also sad book on The Holocaust from a perspective
of an eyewitness and survivor (then 13 year old) Livia Bitton-Jackson growing
up in the 1940's in Europe in Hungary during the invasion of her region by the
Nazi's and how she, her mother, father, brother and family were deported to
Auschwitz and their terrible ordeals they had to go through as well as how
life was in a Nazi concentration camp.

It is not that long of a book and can be finished in a week or less
at only 234 pag
...more
Nicolle
I could not put this book down. I will admit it was quite depressing at times as a "human being" that these terrible thing's took place and quite scary that something of this magnitude occured. The writing in this book is simple and straight foward. The descriptions (camps,food,clothing,injuries,emotions ect)written about in the book are very "real" to the reader. My heart goes out to the author and her family. There are no words to say how sorry I am to them for this terrible injustice. This bo ...more
Rdonn
I thought this an excellent book, which explained clearly how Jewish families got caught up in the terrible march to extinction, which never made sense to me. It is a book that could be read by mature students as well as adults. I was delighted to find a lecture of hers on line and see and hear this remarkable woman. I highly recommend it to people at all interested in the Holocaust. She was lucky that her mother and brother also survived, and that the Hungarian Jews were not sent to concentrati ...more
Maria
I'm reading this as my "pre-course assignment" for my Honors English 10 class....

Okay. I finished reading this book like last week. It was alright-I hated the fact that Elli's dad dies. What happened to "happily ever after's?" I know this is based on the author's own experience and that must have been a hard blow. Anyway, I give it a four stars. The way Elli talks wasn't very...life life. She'd talk like this, "Mommy, I'll admit I am very hungry. But you haven't eaten and are very thin and any f
...more
Claire Mortimer
Elli Friedman is your average thirteen-year-old Jewish girl growing up in Hungary, until one day her family and her are taken by the Nazi army and forced in to the Holocaust concentration camps. Her thoughts of boys, school, and simple things soon are exchanged for a need to survive. Elli is forced to give up everything. Her father, her home, her book of poems, even her new yellow bike and forced into an environment of torture. There is barley enough edible food to eat, little to no water, but i ...more
Jesse Painter
Going to be honest, when I read this, I was so burnt out on Nazi Germany/Holocaust stories I had a hard time enjoying/reading any of this. But this isn't to say it isn't a good book. Though I'm still "hungover" from Holocaust stories, I'll be as objective as I can.

The story of Elli and the struggles of her family were very real and very moving. I personally prefer this account of the Jews' struggle than most of the ones I read. Elli's struggled became my struggle and I felt for her on a deeper l
...more
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“My hope is that learning about past evils will help us to avoid them in the future.” 19 likes
“What is death all about? What is life all about?” 13 likes
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