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Treasures from the Attic: The Extraordinary Story of Anne Frank's Family

4.01  ·  Rating Details  ·  346 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews

The story is one that is envisioned by many: a relative, an old woman who has lived in the same home for a lifetime, passes away, her death prompting the inevitable task of sorting through her effects by her surviving family. But in the attic in this particular house, a treasure trove of historic importance is found. Rarely does this become an actuality, but when Helene El
ebook, 425 pages
Published April 19th 2011 by Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group (first published 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,220)
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Christopher Louis
A truly wonderful and insightful history of Anne Frank's family who were living in Switzerland during the war. Having read The Diary of Anne Frank many, many times as well as numerous other books about her life I really appreciated being able to discover an entirely new dimension to the story I feel I know so well. This story focuses Otto's Mother, Anne's Grandmother, sister, brother and nephews and how they coped with the knowledge that their loved ones were trapped in the Netherlands with no i ...more
Letters found in the attic by Anne Frank's cousin form the basis of this book fleshing out her family. That part was quite fascinating.

What didn't work was the cloying, sentimentality in the writing style. Made it sound like the book was written for Hallmark or Lifetime. And totally unnecessary since the quoted letters have enough everyday drama.

OTOH, as I read other people's reviews didn't notice other complaints. Either they have a higher tolerance or I was just in a bad mood. Whatever, that t
Karen Blinn
Dec 18, 2013 Karen Blinn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unbeknownst to most people, Anne Frank's paternal grandmother as well as two of her uncles and her two cousins lived relatively unscathed lives in Switzerland while World War II sucked the life out of the Otto Frank family. Originally from Germany, the family had migrated to Switzerland, France, England and the Netherlands as the four brothers tried to escape the Nazi influence. The Netherlands proved the worst choice, and Anne, Margot and Edith Frank lost their lives as a result. But, before a ...more
Aug 30, 2011 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Pat Hauffe, Barbara Dzwonczyk Gatta
If you like WWII and have kept up with all the Anne Frank editions, this is a must read. Apparently, Anne came by her letter writing tendencies quite genetically. This book is a wealth of letters written within Otto Frank's family (Anne's dad.) Her paternal grandmother had an attic full of letters and documents from the family dating back to the early 1800s. Through them we find out that they started out in the German Jewish ghettos, but were released from them under Kaiser Wilhelm I. Because th ...more
Angela Risner
Jun 03, 2012 Angela Risner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been very interested in Anne Frank since I first learned about her as a young girl. Because of her story, I have learned a great deal about WWII and the Holocaust.

I can't believe that I never thought about the rest of the family. I think I just assumed that the entire family perished. Happily, I was wrong.

I think that this is a wonderful story about those who knew Anne personally. It's wonderful that her cousin and his wife are still alive and are able to share these memories with us. It'
Sep 24, 2011 Mai rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I own a variety of books about Anne Frank's family over the years and this one, a collaboration between Anne's cousin-in-law Gerri Elias and German author Mirjam Pressler is a nice addition to that collection.

This book offers more in-depth view of the family history and experience leading up to, during and after World War II and the Holocaust. The book reveals how older generations of Anne's family experienced antisemitism and lived in conditions similar to the ghettos that Nazi Germany would p
Freda Labianca
May 20, 2011 Freda Labianca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you read The Diary of Anne Frank, such as I did, you know what a wonderful girl she was in one of the worst time in history.
Who wouldn't want to know where she came from?!
When I saw Treasures from the Attic, I knew I would love it!
Anne Frank's story stayed with me most of my life, since reading her story as a child. It resonated deep in my soul, how strong not only this girl, but those in her family hiding with her.
Now I know where she gets it from.
Her family has been through so much, and sti
Jul 03, 2011 Leslie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pressler's collaboration with Gerti Elias has resulted in a wonderful companion to The Diary of Anne Frank . Readers who wish to know more about Anne's extended family, their lives during and after the war, and most especially, Otto Frank's life after the war should pick this up. Literally a treasure trove of letters amongst the family was found in the Elias house in Basel, Switzerland, leading to this in-depth examination of the family that produced a little girl who became the voice of the Hol ...more
May 19, 2011 Pam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been reading quite a few books dealing with the holocaust this year and when I saw this audio book about Anne Frank's family, I decided to listen to the family's story. I can only advise you to read the book and skip the audio book. Not that the orator does not do a good job but the book is filled with pictures and notes from the Frank family. It is easier to follow using the book with the aid of a family tree. And it is clearer to me who was writing the letters to whom. My only complaint ...more
Catlyn Caldart
Jun 29, 2012 Catlyn Caldart rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting book full of information about Anne Frank's family. Her aunt, cousin, grandmother, and great-grandmother are all explored in detail through letters, diary entries, and photos found in a house after WWII. It was really interesting to hear the thoughts and fears of the family members as they realized the danger Anne's family was in while they were in hiding (which was never officially conveyed to the family, just hinted at in a birthday card). I was particularly moved by the letters ...more
An interesting historical perspective on the family of Anne Frank - or at least, Anne Frank's paternal family. Going back four or five generations, the main portion of the book is spent on Anne's grandmother, Alice, her father, Frank and his sister, Leni. The book was written in consultation with Leni's daughter-in-law, Gerti, who found boxes of correspondence in the attic of the family home and decided they were worth closer inspection. Included are several family pictures and copies of the let ...more
Everyone knows the story of Anne Frank; most if not all of us have read her diary (be it for school, curiosity or leisure). This book is the story of Anne's family from her great-grandparents to her own immediate family and cousins. It covers both before WWII and after - including intimate letters and pictures of the family during these times.

This book is engrossing and a fast read. It is like reading the diaries of all of Anne's relatives. Here we get to see how the family interacted with one
Sep 27, 2014 Gemma rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Encontré este libro un poco por casualidad, una de esas tardes en las que recorro las estanterías de la biblioteca, buscando algo nuevo que leer. Fue una foto en el lomo del libro lo que primero me llamó la atención, de Ana Frank, cuyo diario ya habré leído unas 3 veces, al menos. Si en su diario Ana hablaba de cómo fue su vida mientras estaban escondidos, este otro libro nos da a conocer cómo vivieron esa etapa de la historia los otros miembros de la familia Frank, como por ejemplo su abuela Al ...more
Apr 29, 2011 Edward rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Puts the Anne Frank story into the perspective of her family's history.
I can remember when my father gave me The Diary of Anne Frank to read, I was twelve years old, we had just moved and he solemnly handed me the book. Over the years, I have read it four times. It made a huge impression on me so when I saw this book, Treasures from the Attic by Mirjam Pressler, I had to read it. Anne Frank’s aunt Helene Elias (Otto Frank’s sister) had passed away and left a huge amount of family letters, poems and pictures in her home. As the blurb on the inside cover says over 6, ...more
Ann Woodbury Moore
I became fascinated with Anne Frank and her story as a teenager and have continued to read about her, on and off, for years. This book was originally published in the U.S. in 2011 under the title "Treasures From the Attic." Gerti Elias, the wife of Anne's cousin Buddy, discovered a vast collection of letters, photographs, and other family memorabilia when she moved into her mother-in-law's home in Basel, Switzerland in the 1980's. This is just a sample of that material. It covers the Frank famil ...more
Esther Bos
Dec 20, 2014 Esther Bos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story of Anne Frank's extended family based on letters,documents and photos stored in the attic of the family home. Who knew that Anne came from from an educated, privileged and well-traveled family? I didn't,and this book gives a look at her family far beyond the world of the "secret annex"in Amsterdam.
Oct 07, 2014 CJ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-books
I will admit, there are portions of this book that I skimmed. I watned to know more about the Frank family, but I could do without some of the excruciating detail. Loved the actual letters from the family members and the history. Worth a read, but it may take a while.
Noel Wallace
Apr 22, 2015 Noel Wallace rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, this book was lovely! I thoroughly enjoyed learning more about the Frank family through this book. It gave me a greater sense of who the Franks were and I loved that. The actual letters and documents preserved by the family for years are amazing to actually be able to sit and read word for word. This book is a real piece of history. This is a great book for anyone interested in learning more about Anne Frank and her family. It can get a little slow at times, so it may take you a while to ge ...more
May 06, 2014 Priyanka rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An in-depth story of Anne Frank's family. It so strongly conveys the pain of not knowing in what condition your family is, pain of losing people by death especially when they were tortured to death.

It's a great book.
Feb 20, 2014 Christina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5-stars
Thank you, Gerti Elias, for sharing your families letters with the world! After knowing Anne through her diaries it was so nice to know her family too. Otto Frank, what a remarkable man.
Mary (BookHounds)
This is a fascinating look at the extended family of Anne Frank told through letters, pictures and postcards exchanged between Helene and her brother, Otto, the father of Anne Frank. There are notes of joy and happiness mixed in with the despair and concern of the family that comes to realize that Otto's family is trapped by the Nazis and there is no way for them to find freedom. Most people know the story of Anne and her family, but I don't think anyone has ever documented the horror that her f ...more
3 1/2 stars. Beautiful memoir of a family that endured sorrows and pains as well as joy and happiness. Took me some time to get into though. But a good read. I am now inspired to go back and reread The Diary of Anne Frank. I believe having read this book I will be able to understand Anne's book a lot better.
Sep 04, 2012 Steen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book really interesting. I can't even imagine what the family went through not hearing from Otto, Edith and the two girls the whole time they were in hiding then not knowing for the longest time if they were okay after the war. I felt like I was as anxious as they must have been reading their letter to each other while waiting for any news, and I knew what happened to them. Still so sad that after two years the Frank family was betrayed and that Anne and Margot passed a few months b ...more
Mar 27, 2016 Delores rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this was a very interesting, and enlightening book, as well as being easy to read/keep my interest.
May 16, 2013 Yasmin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An amazing book about a remarkable and extraordinary family, not only by being related to Anne Frank, they were remarkable and extraordinary in their own individual way each one. Although it was hard to read knowing what happened to Otto, Edith, Margot, Anne and cousin Paul, but to know that they lived on and did have happy and enjoyable lives again and that the Frank family inspires so many people even today. The Diary of Anne Frank immortalised herself and this book immortalises the rest of he ...more
Renee Cutchen
Aug 05, 2014 Renee Cutchen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting family history of an iconic figure.
Diana Ware
Jun 10, 2014 Diana Ware rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a history of the Frank family. It starts in the 1800's and continues to the present day. We have all heard the story of Anne Frank and her immediate family, but this gives us an insight into her extended family.
Even more than that it shows what daily life in Europe was like for the average Jewish family, perhaps a bit of what all Europeans were dealing with at that time in history.
It is remarkable that this family still has so many documents and photos remaining.
This book certainly suffered from some dry patches but as a history of the varied experiences of European Jews as represented in a single family, it was fascinating. For all that I've read about the Holocaust, this taught me things that I had not known about the Jewish experience. Also, provides interesting context to Anne's diary for those that are already familiar with the work (thankfully, Pressler does not entirely rehash the diary or the Franks' experience in hiding).
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German writer Mirjam Pressler is the author of several novels that have won awards in her native Germany and also received high praise from critics after being translated into English. In Malka and Halinka Pressler focuses on young Jewish protagonists who have been forced by fate to endure the Holocaust, while in Shylock's Daughter she returns readers to fifteenth-century Italy as she attempts to ...more
More about Mirjam Pressler...

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