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Jack and Rochelle: A Holocaust Story of Love and Resistance
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Jack and Rochelle: A Holocaust Story of Love and Resistance

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  425 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Describes the meeting of two escaped prisoners from Nazi labor camps and the dangerous circumstances under which they survived and resisted the war, which included raids on nearby Polish farms. IP.
Paperback, 225 pages
Published March 1st 1996 by Graywolf Press (first published 1995)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,757)
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Kat
There is nothing as compelling as a real-life story - whether it's a love story, a war story or a personal journey through an unimaginable horror. Jack and Rochelle is all three of these stories, melded and meshed together into an unforgettable story of the terrible things that human beings can do to each other and the power of love and determination.

Told simply, in a conversational format and alternating between Jack and Rochelle, it is a story that I found completely and utterly riveting from...more
Diane Chamberlain
This book will make you open your well-stocked pantry and freezer doors and stand there in awe at all the choices you have, knowing that some people survived for months and months on nothing more than flour and water. This is an eye-opening and beautiful story about love and survival. I was familiar, of course, with life in the concentration camps, but not with the partisan groups who escaped to the wilderness and managed to survive in the freezing cold and parasite-ridden summers for years. Ama...more
Becky
This powerful book of the Jewish resistance in Poland is one of the most inspirational books of survival and will power -- plus, the story of love which endures. The descriptions of living under ground, the woods, the swamp,etc. are so vivid! I learned a lot about the psychology of people in close quarters under constant stress and what people have to do to survive.
Amy Hustead
A touching account of resistance, fate and true love (just to name a few) that made me cry often but mostly made me feel thankful for the very basic things I have (food, roof, family, etc..) I liked how the story allowed for both jack and Rochelle to each tell their own side and version. Finally i am glad I finally read it after searching for it for so long!
Katelyn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Trisha
This is the remarkable, true-life account of Jack and Rochelle Sutin, two Polish Jews who fled the Nazi labor camps and escaped the holocaust by hiding out the war in the deeply wooded forests of Poland. Narrated alternately between the two of them, their story has been carefully and faithfully captured by their son Laurence as it was told to him in a series of interviews. It is filled with harrowing and gruesome details familiar to readers of holocaust literature, but unlike many other books in...more
Christy
Synopsis:

Jack and Rochelle Sutin tell their survival story, taking turns recounting all that they endured as Polish Jews during the Holocaust. They start with a brief account of their family and their lives before the war. Mere acquaintances before the Nazi occupation, the two met again after escaping the ghettos, hiding with other Jewish partisans in the Belorussian forest called Naliboki.

Review:

In December of last year, I read Nechama Tec’s book Defiance, about the Bielski partisans, who took...more
Tim Kubiak
an interesting read told in a conversational manner. A love story at the core based in the most unlikely of circumstances and with some of the awareness left intact which made it only more compelling. Different from many survivor stories as Jack and Rochelle chose to escape if for no other reason than to die on their terms and were part of the resistance as a means of survival.
Annette
It's hard to describe why this story isn't like other holocaust stories. It doesn't take place in a concentration camp for one thing. But mostly I think because the love Rochelle and Jack have for one another comes through each part of the story. Their side of the war being in hidden resistance is an effort you hear little about increasing the interest. Mostly I felt how they were real to me, the voice of the writing plays well off one another's narration. And it isn't bogged down with ugly char...more
Denise Jo
This is the story of Jack and Rochelle Sutin as told to their son, who writes with great love and sensitivity about his parents' struggle to survive the Holocaust. Theirs is the account of a segment of the Holocaust I had known little about before I read this book: the Jewish Resistance. As the Nazis invaded Poland, established, and then emptied the ghettos, some Jews escaped to the forests, living in dirt caves, hiding from the Nazis, scratching out their survival from one day to the next, not...more
Julie
This is a really wonderful nonfiction story of holocaust survival, but it differs from those normally told in two crucial ways. First off, the main characters, Jack and Rochelle, are not confined to a concentration camp but instead live in the forests of Poland as part of a Jewish partisan unit made up of other Jews who managed to escape the mass murders in their cities. Secondly, this story speaks of the time after, of moving and adapting and returning to normal society with a new family. I wou...more
Tara
This turned out to be a wonderful story. It was a little slow moving at first, but then really picked up. Like most Holocaust stories, I'm amazed at what this couple went through. I hadn't read much about Jewish partisan groups, so this was a good read to learn more about what they did during the war. I loved how the story was told by both Jack and Rochelle. The narrative style really felt like I was sitting at their dining room table listening to them tell the story of how they survived. I woul...more
Hannah Harrimanheharriman
A story of love, resistance, survival, and perseverance. I had known about concentration camps, but I never knew about resistance efforts. Reading this made me realize how much I take life itself for granted.
shruti
A beautiful true story of a family's experience through the Holocaust. The story is like a transcript of Jack and Rochelle Sutin telling their story, but it has real beauty in it.

Part of the reason I love this so much is I met Jack and Rochelle Sutin during a premiere of a play about their lives that I was covering for the paper. So I have a signed copy of the book. But it really is a beautiful story.
Jan
This is the true story of Jews hiding from the Nazis in the forest. It is a tale of survival, resourcefulness and love. I learned a lot from this book. I had no idea how many people were hiding in the woods, the sophisticated settlements they built and what they had to go through to survive. It reminded me of the movie "Defiance" that was in the theaters last winter.
Ann Klefstad
Lawrence Sutin, Jack and Rochelle's son, wrote this account of his parent's epic. It's profoundly moving without being in the least manipulative, truthful and restrained. The story is incredible, and reminds one that any face, any ordinary face you see in the course of the day, could open and tell you such a story, even though such stories are rare.
Julie
Amazing, touching, inspirational. It's hard to fathom that someone can go through all that Jack and Rochelle did, survive, and then use the strength and intensity they had during the war to build a better life for themselves and their family afterward. Especially at this time of year, what a reminder of all that we have to be grateful for!
Jennifer Willcutt
I read this book for my reading classes. It's a holocaust story, and it's amazing what this couple went through to survive -- and thankfully it has a happy ending! The students in my reading classes love it because it's a love story, it's nonfiction, and there are some gritty details that we could all identify with.
Jennie
Less than inspiring - starts off well enough, but in the end they dress him as a woman so he doesn't have to fight anymore. I lost all respect for them at that point. Especially as they describe the other women sending their men off to fight, not knowing if they would return. Seemed pretty selfish to me.
Pamela
This is the riveting story of a Jewish couple surviving the holocaust in Poland. It is a story of survival, but more than that, it is a story of enduring love. An excellent read--full of the dark side of human nature, yet ultimately it delivers a message of hope and resilience.
Lindsay
It was like sitting around a living room and hearing their story of survival and the hell they experienced. I hate to think that anyone had to go through what they did. I loved the last line, that Jack wanted basically everyone to know how much he loves Rochelle.
Kirsten
Jun 07, 2008 Kirsten rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone
A true story of the Holocaust. Two young adults try to make it though the Holocaust and find their way to each other. Another great true story. Very emotional. It's hard to believe the things these survivors did to live.
Jessica
This is the story of Jack and Rochelle's life and mainly their Holocuast survival. They survived by hiding in the Polish forest which seems impossible but they did it. A very unique Holocaust story. Highly recommended.
Katherine
Well worth reading. I had not been familiar with the experiences of Jewish partisans in Poland during WWII, so learned quite a bit. This is also a very sweet love story.
Karen
This was such a wonderful love story. Some parts were hard to read but then if you didn't understand the pain and hurt then you couldn't get the real love they had for each other.
Ilene
This story is of harrowing times conquered by a timeless love. The locales in Poland were
especially poignant. Sutin was Barrett's professor at Hamline.
Jarrah
An amazing story of the human spirit. Told by two Holocaust Survivors who escaped the Nazi's and survived by living in the woods of the Nalibocka Forest.
Julie Jones
Super interesting. The writing was questionable but it came from transcribed interviews so I'll excuse that.
Michelle
A very interesting WWII story. I quite liked it. There were a lot of things I hadn't heard before.
Nancy  K.
The desire to survive is one of the most powerful desires we have.
A Holocaust survival must read.
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