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The Choice: Embrace the Possible

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4.56  ·  Rating details ·  31,407 ratings  ·  3,467 reviews
It’s 1944 and sixteen-year-old ballerina and gymnast Edith Eger is sent to Auschwitz. Separated from her parents on arrival, she endures unimaginable experiences, including being made to dance for the infamous Josef Mengele. When the camp is finally liberated, she is pulled from a pile of bodies, barely alive.

The horrors of the Holocaust didn’t break Edith. In fact, they h
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Paperback, 360 pages
Published September 5th 2017 by Scribner
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Lauren Thanks everyone, I've actually read this since and as others have mentioned, it's nowhere near as graphic as some other accounts I've read. I'd defini…moreThanks everyone, I've actually read this since and as others have mentioned, it's nowhere near as graphic as some other accounts I've read. I'd definitely recommend it to others in terms of its unique perspective and how her view on life is actually incredibly uplifting. I know it helped me.(less)
Danielle Sprueill Yes I just finished it for our book club. It could be a life changing read. Thought provoking, easy to read, I loved it. I would recommend it. Eger is…moreYes I just finished it for our book club. It could be a life changing read. Thought provoking, easy to read, I loved it. I would recommend it. Eger is a miracle just being alive, her writing is superb. (less)

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Maureen
Aug 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
**4.5 STARS **

Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity”
― James Baldwin, The Fire Next Time

I could never find the right words and phrases to describe what a moving yet uplifting memoir this is. Edith Eger was just 16 years old in 1944 when she entered the gates of hell - Auschwitz. Her grandparents and mother and father were sent to the gas chamber under the direct orders of the inf
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Elyse  Walters
Aug 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Time doesn’t heal. It’s what you do with time. Healing is possible when we choose to take responsibility, when we choose to take risks, and finally, when we choose to release the wound, to let go of the past or the grief”.

The above excerpt is true - but that doesn’t mean it’s easy - or can be achieved by waving a magic wand- or positive thinking it alone. We’d only be fooling ourselves.
It’s more involved than simply stating a mantra.

But.... I’m getting ahead of myself.
The most important thi
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Louise Wilson
Aug 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dr Edith Eva Eger is an eminent psychologist whose own experiences as a Holocaust survivor helps her treat patients and allows them to escape the prisons of their own minds.

Edith Eger was just sixteen when the Nazis came to her hometown of Hungry and took the Jewish family to an interment centre and then to Auschwitz. Her parents were then sent to the gas chamber by Joseph Menele. Edith was demanded by Menele to waltz "The Blue Danube" just a few hours after her parents were murdered. Menele rew
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Dem
Mar 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, ww2, memoir
Edith Eger’s determination and courage to survive against the odds make this a heart-breaking but powerful and inspiring read.

This is what reading is all about for me, and I am grateful to Edith Eger who generously takes her readers on a journey that is harrowing but so inspirational and motivating. I have read so many concentration camp survivor’s stories over the years and each and every one of those books have taught me something new and that is the reason I keep reading and learning and r
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Karen
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the memoir of Dr. Edith Eger, age 90...an internationally acclaimed psychologist and one of the few remaining Holocaust survivors. At the age of sixteen, along with her parents and sister Magda, was sent to Auschwitz.
Edie and Magda survived multiple death camps, and Edie was found barely alive in a pile of corpses when American Troops liberated the camps in 1945.
Such an extraordinary book on survival and stories of how she has helped others to heal by confronting their suffering and maki
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Kathleen
This is a beautiful, absolutely pitch-perfect memoir by Dr. Edith Eger. I was not familiar with Dr. Eger prior to reading this, and I am grateful to her for sharing her story.

The book is organized into four sections: Prison, Escape, Freedom, and Healing. I would describe it as three parts memoir, one part therapy. It would be enough, simply for nanogeneraian Dr. Eger to tell us her story and share the important events she witnessed in her lifetime. But she is not satisfied to make this book onl
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Paul Lockman
Sep 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-favourites
5 stars
Absorbing. Brilliant. A truly inspirational read.
What a woman! Edith Eger is now 90 years old and has given the world this outstanding memoir of her survival in Auschwitz as a teenager and then her life after WWII when she and her husband emigrated to America and all the while describing how she has dealt with being a survivor and her path to self-acceptance, self-fulfilment and inner peace. The book cover has a quote from Desmond Tutu, ‘A gift to humanity. One of those rare and eternal s
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Samantha
I will admit that I did not expect to enjoy this book. I thought it was going to be another holocaust memoir with a hint of psychological analysis. But man, was I wrong.
This book was beautifully written, and was a struggle to put down every night. This book was a small exercise in self-help, disguised as a gorgeous memoir. The Choice has genuinely made me change how I think about life.

I would highly recommend this book.
Lisa Vegan
full 5 stars book

It’s a great mix of holocaust, biography, psychology, though it’s mostly her personal story, with various family members, and to a lesser extent some of her patients included. It’s extremely readable and it flows beautifully, and I didn’t want to put it down.

It’s a compelling account, and it’s powerful, and for me with “punches to the gut” emotional.

It seems that she wants readers/others to feel empowered by her story and with what she’s learned about healing and living, but m
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Cheri
At the age of 16, Edith Eva Eger, Edie to her friends, was living in Kosice, Slovakia when she, along with one of her two sisters, her mother and father were forced to leave their home behind, and removed to a labor camp, followed by their transfer to Auschwitz. It was the last day she would ever see her mother, and where her parents were executed.

”Survivors don’t have time to ask, ‘Why me?’ For survivors, the only relevant question is, ‘What now?’”

Dr. Josef Mengele has requested entertainm
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Hans
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Easily six stars! I don't have words to describe this gem. Just read it yourself!
Chrissie
This book is more than a holocaust memoir. Look at the title--The Choice: Embrace the Possible. It does detail the author’s holocaust experiences, but it goes further. Its primary focus concerns how to live life after surviving a trauma, any trauma. It is more about living than it is about death. The tone of the book is positive, not negative. Changing the past is not possible, but actively choosing how you wish to live the future is.

The introduction outlines what the book will cover--Edith Ege
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Tania
Aug 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“Survivors don't have time to ask, "Why me?" For survivors, the only relevant question is, "What now?”

I can’t believe that such a small little book (287 pages) can pack such a big punch! I think this memoir and self-help text is life-changing and incredibly inspiring. If you only read one book this year make it this one.

The first third of The Choice is a description of Edith’s family life and her arrival at Auschwitz at the age of 16. As in Night the devil is in the detail, and some of the image
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Andrea
Jun 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-books
An emotional read especially the ordeal of the sisters trying to survive the terrible place Auschwitz a story that should never be forgotten.🌹
Linda
Aug 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I once had the opportunity to hear Christopher Reeves speak after he was paralyzed from his neck down. He was confined to a wheelchair, dependent on a ventilator to breath and yet I was totally amazed at all he had accomplished after his accident...how he did not allow his body to imprison him. Tears flowed through out the audience as he shared his story . I do not think anyone could leave that day without being inspired.

Amazing as it is, Edy Eger and her book have impacted me even more. Not onl
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Jan Rice
This book began as a roadmap for dealing with trauma and suffering amid societal upheaval -- in her case, the Holocaust. Given our current situation, I resonated with that. I'm thinking not only of our pandemic and the required social distancing and economic crisis, but also the tragicomedy of our having a wannabe totalitarian leader here in America who plays the segments of our population against each other, no matter how many lives will be lost. Under such circumstances, what good will it do f ...more
Ruth O'hagan
Aug 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This was one of the most beautiful and inspiring books I have ever read. Edith tells the story her extraordinary. The main premise of the book is how she highlights her extraordinary experience as a Holocaust survivor and the how she learned to heal herself. Edith gently takes the reader by the hand vividly guides the reader on a journey of her past and present through this book. The most compelling section of the book is when she retells her experience in the concentration camps. She explains i ...more
Leila
This is for me, an unforgettable book which I will go back to many times. It is full of such pain, honesty, truth and many more emotions which are threading through the full story. The terrible experiences of a Jewish girl taken prisoner by the Nazis and sent to their prison camps, especially Auschwitz is told during the first part of the book but then there is so much wisdom, humanity, love, pain and understanding throughout the second part. It is not an easy book to review for there is so much ...more
MJ
Jul 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
No words to describe this. It's life-changing and I will never forget what I read here. Thank you so much for sharing your story, Dr. Eger. It truly was one of the most inspiring books I've ever read.
Marjolein
Bookclub book of the month - May

“Time doesn't heal. It’s what you do with the time. Healing is possible when we choose to take responsibility, when we choose to take risks, and finally, when we choose to release the wound, to let go of the past or the grief.”

I don't even know where to start my review. Somehow, I was expecting this to be a story about survival, but it ended up being so much more than that. Edith Eger is an inspiration to us all, and her book is most definitely a must-read. Her st
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Schizanthus Nerd
“Just remember, no one can take away from you what you’ve put in your mind.”
Sometimes a book will find you at the very moment you need it. This is one of those books. I’ve previously marvelled at the resilience of some other remarkable human beings who survived the Holocaust. Elie Wiesel. Viktor Frankl.

Joining them is Edith Eger. A survivor whose courage both astounds me and gives me hope. A woman who will be occupying the space in my heart that she has made bigger with her compassion. A tou
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Laura
May 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: four-star
An uplifting and powerful lifetime memoir documenting not only the authors experience in Auschwitz but also the longer term recovery, both physically and psychologically. This was an unexpected read in the sense that I anticipated much of the book to be focused on wartime; when in actual fact, only the first third was. The latter parts of the book focus on the authors personal life as she nurtured a family and works as a psychologist.

This was different to many books of a similar genre but I enj
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Tati
Jul 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Never forget. Never again

Years ago, I've had the chance of visiting a concentration camp. It was a haunted place, a place that had its soul burnt in the crematories. It is a dark and heavy feeling to know that someone very likely died or feared for their lives where you are casually stepping. It was not a happy visit. But it was a necessary visit, one I think every human being should make, so that the horror of the Holocaust is not allowed to happen again.

That being said, I sometimes feel that t
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Kym Moore
Oct 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
How does one survive negative feelings and destructive patterns of behavior resulting from depression, worthlessness, grief, facing death, inadequacy or even survivor's guilt?

This is an excellent book, but I must warn you that it was a very emotional read that made it difficult to get through without crying (a lot). It's so much more than just a powerful memoir. As a survivor of Auschwitz, yet struggling with flashbacks and survivor's guilt, Dr. Edith Eva Eger's journey gives you hope that we ca
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Tracey Anderson
Mar 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This isn't just a memoir about living through the holocaust, in fact Edith's time in the concentration camps is a very small part of the story. This is a memoir about recovering and moving on. Learning how to for forgive yourself for things that happened when you had no control over your life. Every day we make choices for ourselves without even thinking about it and those choices can effect your life and the people around us. How do we forgive ourself when those choices have such catastrophic c ...more
Amy
It took me a long time to figure out how to review this five star read. This is not an easy book. In fact its hard to pick up a book that you know will be powerful. There's never a time to truly be "in the mood." But being in Goodreads, there is always a reason to pick up a particular book at a particular time. I knew the time for this had come.

Dr. Edith Eva Eger is a psychologist like me, and her book opens with some of the struggles of her patients. The undercurrent theme of the book, or perha
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Gary
Aug 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Julia
Sep 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, what a book! Such an absorbing and truly inspirational read, Edith’s story is extraordinary. What she went through as a child is incomprehensible and then to go on to achieve what she did is remarkable. A really well written, fascinating memoir.
Monique Thomas
Mar 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. It’s one of those books that you just don’t want to put down. Beautifully written and straight from the heart. What a wise and wonderful woman she is. A must read.
Marilyn
Aug 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Choice: Embrace The Possible written by Edith Eger was her memoir. This was a story that I only hope many people will read. I have read many book about the Holocaust but the message that Edith Eger wrote about in her memoir was so important and meaningful. For her to have survived the horrors of Auschwitz and then be able to internalize those learning experiences to help others is not only impressive but remarkable. The choices Edith Eger made as a young girl were nothing short of amazing bu ...more
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