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Triumph of Hope: From Theresienstadt and Auschwitz to Israel

4.35  ·  Rating details ·  209 ratings  ·  19 reviews
Triumph of Hope From Theresienstadt and Auschwitz to Israel Now available in English, here is the award-winning and internationally acclaimed testament of a Jewish woman who was taken to Auschwitz while several months pregnant, where she was forced to confront perhaps the most agonizing choice ever imposed upon any woman, upon any human being . so that both she and her new ...more
ebook, 286 pages
Published September 1st 1999 by Wiley (first published January 1st 1988)
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A better-than-average Holocaust memoir. Ruth Elias spent some time in Theresienstadt, married there, and arrived in Auschwitz pregnant. Most pregnant women are gassed immediately, but they missed her condition, and she became adept at hiding it. When they did find out, she was very close to giving birth. The infamous Mengele decided to keep Ruth around to experiment how long a newborn baby will live without being fed. So he bound Ruth's breasts up so she couldn't nurse the child, and left them t ...more
Jackie McClellan
Very moving actual account from a survivor of the Holocaust. Her triumph over evil and horrible circumstances is a lesson to all.
Eva Marie
Jun 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone interested in personal Holocaust stories
Recommended to Eva Marie by: bought @ Borders
I like to read the blurbs on books. I like to see if I agree with the blurbs. Publishers Weekly says "The understated tone of this memoir adds to the author's powerful recreation of her life as a young Czechoslovak Jewish woman during the Holocaust." They forgot to add "pregnant".
Any victim of the Holocaust has seen and experienced things a person should never experience and never see. All Holocaust memoirs that pass through my hands are powerful in their own right. Even when a book doesn't coi
Barbara Kinsky
Jun 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: auto-biographies
This is a fantastic account of what the author suffered, especially in the concentration camps. It is so heart wrenching and at times, I thought it was unbelievable how any human being could treat these people so badly! What amazed me about the editing was that this book was translated to English in 1998 and one would expect then to have very poor editing but there were no mistakes! Well done to the Editor. I strongly recommend anybody who is interested in the Holocaust to read this book.
May 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a powerful book, but if you are pregnant I would put off reading it until later. It is one of the few stories i have ever read of pregnancy in the camps.
One of the most forceful points for me was that abortion was punishable by death (so no one dared perform one) yet everyone knew the baby would not be allowed to live after it was born. It is heartrending, but it is an important example of the idiocy of the thinking of the Nazis.
Cruelty and stupidity allowed free reign.
Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Brutally honest. Shocking, horrible. And even more so, afterwards...still being persecuted by the Czechs...and even in Israel, not welcomed, blamed, somehow for their existence. It was refreshing though to hear of her eventual happiness there and other children.
Erin Woodall
Aug 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was wonderfully written. She tells not only about being in the camps, but about life after and all the hardships to start living again. That is something most of the memoirs I have read did not discuss - trying to begin again.
I would have enjoyed this book more had it stopped at the end of chapter 6. The last chapter and the epilogue detracted from the power of the rest of the book. Aside from this bit, this is a very well-written and detailed book on Ruth's Holocaust experiences. ...more
Lori Bond
Feb 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Any book that can keep me up all night reading gets a 5 star review from me. This was a really well written book. You could feel how even 50 years later she still can not understand why this was done to people of her faith, or any faith for that matter. You can feel the anguish and eventual anger that even after it was all over and she was liberated it still would not go away. She had such a hard time fighting off the hate she felt for the German people afterwards. Hate is a strong word but I re ...more
Feb 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
Gripping. What an amazing and well-told story.

For one, I've always wondered what had gone through the minds of these people - the ones who survived the Holocaust and the ones who didn't. I'll never know the answer about the latter, but this memoir gives a glimpse into a survivor's mind and her life in hiding, in a ghetto, and in the dreaded concentration camps.

As I read the story, it was obvious to me that Ruth had a lot of sheer luck - of knowing the right people and of being in the right place
Jun 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: holocaust
Above average Holocaust memior that had me hooked from the first page. As typical of these memiors you cant help but admire the author's strength and determination during her nightmare in Auschwitz. Her telling of having a baby and her dealing with Josef Mengele was absolutely heartbreaking. Watching her family leave for the gas chamber and never seeing them again. How badly I wanted Edith to have survived. A new subject for me was her experiences when she finally made it to Isreal and how the J ...more
Netty Vanity
May 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Terrible, in a good way of course..This book must touch everyone's heart, even less sensitive people. "Triumph Of Hope" gave me strongest experience ever. I was really moved. I find it much better than famous "Diary of Anne Frank". Ruth was so strong and so inventive, it's really admirable. Reading about her hiding from Nazis or experiences from Terezin,Taucha or Auschwitz is just breath taking. It's really difficult to understand how this could happen and how survivors could maintain their sani ...more
Kathy Oldham
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ruth Elias' memoir aches with emotion, which is to be exptected. Her story is special because it tells about what life was like for her after liberation, where other stories tend to end. She illustrates the shocking behavior of former friends, and a family member who visits, in her hometown after being freed. Especially revealing was how emigrants to Israel were treated and her early years settling in her new home. This chronicle of the indomitable human spirit shines a light into the blackest d ...more
May 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Shelves: history, research
This is one of the best Holocaust memoirs I've read. She faced so many trials and challenges in her life, but she tells her story with a voice of hope.
It's important to know what happened during that dark time in history, and this book is a great read for the novice and the historian alike.
Highly recommended.
r. markham
Mar 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I have read several books about the holocaust. As a gentile Christian I was never informed about the tragedy of WWII and the plight of the Jewish people. I have an insatiable appetite for the holocaust. This was an excellent book on this subject!!!
Jan 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
by far the best holocaust story I've ever read ...more
Jan 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I want my children to read this when they grow up. As a mother, it made me weep to think of those poor women and children who were "experimented on" during the Holocaust. ...more
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