Lorraine's Reviews > An Interrupted Life: The Diaries, 1941-1943; and Letters from Westerbork

An Interrupted Life by Etty Hillesum
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's review
Sep 28, 12

bookshelves: list-1992, list-2002
Read in January, 1992

If I could only take 10 books with me to a deserted island, this would be one. Sort of "Anne Frank" for adults, it is the journals of a young Dutch Jew caught up in the Holocaust. She is brilliant and outgoing and living life to the full, when Hitler's ugly shadow begins to fall over her world. The struggles and dramas that ensue highlight the development of her soul into a loving and courageous being,who was able to write, even as the net drew tighter around her: "I know that those who hate have good reason to do so. But why should we always have to choose the cheapest and easiest way? It has been brought home forcibly to me here how every atom of hatred added to the world makes it an even more inhospitable place. And I believe, childishly perhaps but stubbornly, that the earth will become habitable again only through the love that the Jew Paul described to the citzens of Corinth in the thirteenth chapter of his first letter." We need this kind of thinking and living as much in our 21st century world as they needed it in Europe in 1942.
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