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Four Girls from Berlin: A True Story of a Friendship that Defied the Holocaust
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Four Girls from Berlin: A True Story of a Friendship that Defied the Holocaust

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  99 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
A pair of silver Regency candlesticks.

Pieces of well-worn family jewelry.

More than a thousand documents, letters, and photographs

Lotte Meyerhoff's best friends risked their lives in Nazi Germany to safeguard these and other treasured heirlooms and mementos from her family and return them to her after the war. The Holocaust had left Lotte the lone survivor of her family, an
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published August 1st 2007 by Wiley
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Sep 13, 2007 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2007, memoirs
Long-winded without any real point. I thought this would be about a group of girls who survived the Holocaust, and it was - but it wasn't. It was such a small part of the story, the rest was about the daughter and how she felt, and the friends she made by meeting her mother's friends from when she lived in Berlin.
Holly Ites
Aug 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Much like Corrie Ten Boom's "The Hiding Place," Marianne Mayerhoff's true account of her search for her German-Jewish identity tells a very personal story of the Holocaust. What makes Mayerhoff's account so compelling is that there is no dogma or principle bonding the "Four Girls from Berlin," three Christians and one Jew, other than their love of music and of each other, a commitment so deep that it defies Hitler, spans continents, and extends through time, touching generations. We will never u ...more
Jun 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Very moving story monitors the effects of living through World War 2, Nazi Germany and beyond. Is it really true that German children aren't taught about this period of their country's history?
Sep 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is book 2 for week "four"...I'm kind of surprised I'm still doing this number thing, but it seems to be working out well. I've read some interesting books so far that I would never have picked up regularly.

Marianne Meyerhoff is the daughter of a German Jew who survived WWII. In this book she is telling about the friendship between her mother and three other women from Berlin. The other women hid some of her family's heirlooms, despite the personal risk if they were caught, and sent them to
Oct 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This book transcends time and place as it follows the lifelong friendship of four friends that defied the Holocaust. The book is written by Marianne Meyerhoff, daughter of Lotte who is one of the four friends in this book.

Lotte who was Jewish was somewhat lucky in that she got out of Germany before Germany fell, but she did not escape unscathed.

Her friends, Ilonka, Erica and Ursula were Aryans who stayed behind (Ursula and her husband were missionaries in Africa during this period) and visited
May 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: holocaust
Marianne's mother, Lotte, had three best (Christian) friends growing up in Berlin. Marianne's story isn't about the Holocaust as much as it is about how far the effects of Hitler's Germany reached. It's also about how the friends didn't buy into the Hitler propaganda and why they were immune while everone else was jumping on the bandwagon...and where did they get the courage not to run with the pack. I don't recall reading a book that described in such detail the life of a child born to a Holoca ...more
Dec 30, 2007 rated it liked it
It always comes back to the Holocaust, I guess... this was a very touching, very personal story by the daughter of a survivor who kept up with 3 gentile friends from before the war. Certain things bothered me personally that really had nothing to do with the story (mostly the Reform Judaism elements that seem so foreign to me, like their Rabbi going to Sunday church services and being cremated....) Also, if these gentile girls felt such a connection to their Jewish friend, why didnt they visit h ...more
Yechiel Eckstein
Jun 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In Four Girls from Berlin, Jewish author Marianne Meyerhoff tells the story of her mother, Lotte Meyerhoff, who was the sole member of her family to survive the Holocaust. After the war, three of Lotte’s Christian friends from Berlin reach out to her. Through their efforts, Lotte is able to come to grips with the tragic and traumatic events she witnessed and experienced – and to recover a part of her past she thought was too painful to remember. Though tinged with great sorrow and loss, Four Gir ...more
Aug 27, 2007 rated it really liked it
The book tells a story that is utterly touching, of friendship, history, and life. The story itself is sad and hopeful, as most stories from the Holocaust survivors are.

The book writing / editing does leave something to be desired (several typos, repetitive stories, and parts of the story missing, though I am sure they were missing for the author as well).

Overall, the book was good, and it does leave the reader wondering and thinking about the lives of the Four Girls from Berlin...
Jul 30, 2009 added it
This is an exceptional memoir of the life of four women who suffered, loved, and remembered together during one of the most horrific times in the history of Germany and the US. Friendships that last through generations that are still finding each other. A true account told from the daughter of one of the young women portrayed in this moving story.
Apr 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was an absolutely brilliant book. Even tho it's a non-fiction written in nearly-always linear/chronological order from the perspective of the Author, she has still managed to make every person a real loveable character, & every event interesting, & fill everything with suspense & a need to read more.
Sep 16, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book didn't read like I thought that it would. I assumed that it would be about, duh, "4 girls from Berlin." However, it really was about one of the girls' daughters who is trying to figure out her mother's past. She has grown up in America and is trying to get in touch with her German and Jewish roots. It was interesting, and I enjoyed it, but it wasn't what I expected.
Jun 10, 2008 added it
It is the memoirs of a holocaust survivor written by her daughter. It shows the strength of a Jewish woman and the power of God in helping her to survive the holocaust.
May 05, 2012 rated it it was ok
Jun 18, 2008 marked it as to-read
Aug 05, 2007 rated it really liked it
This book was all over the place in the beginning, but ultimately thought it was a good example of how there is good and evil in everyone.
Sep 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfic
Always difficult for me to rate these type of books.
I think I was expecting more from the mother's point of view with this book. Not as expected but still ok. Won't be re-reading though.
Nov 10, 2008 rated it liked it
1945 Germany when the Russians are coming thru town as the Victors. This is the true story of how one young German journalist survives.
Aug 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Both heartwarming and heartbreaking, all the more so because it is non-fiction.
Oct 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Excellent read, very sensitive topic and personal for the author, yet beautifully laid out and readable. An intriguing story.
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“But it is an American thing to love one's roots. American nationality, I mused, is a very special and unique phenomenon in the world. In America, but for Native Americans, all of our forebears hailed from somewhere else. And for all the grief that brought my parents to America, it translates into my good fortune to be born an American. In this hypnotic moment of clarity, I knew where I belonged.” 1 likes
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