Matthew's Reviews > Let Me Go

Let Me Go by Helga Schneider
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Aug 09, 11


Ultimately, this book was an amazing psychological profile of a female prison guard assigned to various Concentration camps during WW2. While this was the eventual focus of the story, the lead up to that insight was tedious and a bit...obvious.

The author saw fit to tell us over and over again, early on, that she hated her mother, clearly assuming the audience would preemptively hate her mother, and so she'd better tell the reader she is with them. I saw this as unnecessary, since a form of revulsion would certainly be implied, and the larger goal I would expect should have been not the monstrosity of the individuals...but their normalcy. Perplexity at such evil and amazement would have been less...maudlin, more real to me.

Whether intentional or not, I was far more moved by the vividness and contemporary feel of the mother who ultimately left husband and family to pursue a sense of purpose in following the Nazi party. By no means parallel to the modern era, I nevertheless couldn't help but ask, "what ideal is worth abandoning family over?".

All around, a good read, not a riveting or even cathartic read, but good in it's insights and attempts to understand the unthinkable and horrific.
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