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Auschwitz Lullaby

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4.22  ·  Rating details ·  7,427 ratings  ·  982 reviews
Based on the true story of a brave German nurse tasked with caring for Auschwitz’s youngest prisoners.

Auschwitz Lullaby brings to life the story of Helene Hannemann—a woman who sacrificed everything for family and fought furiously for the children she hoped to save.


On an otherwise ordinary morning in 1943, Helene Hannemann is preparing her five children for the day when th
...more
Paperback, 281 pages
Published August 7th 2018 by Thomas Nelson (first published March 29th 2016)
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Aleah Scheick Unfortunately it didn’t relay that info at the end

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Average rating 4.22  · 
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 ·  7,427 ratings  ·  982 reviews


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Angela M
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars .

I’ve read many books about the Holocaust, memoirs, and many novels, some of which were based on real people. Yet, there always seems to be something new to learn. The author’s dedication: “To the more than twenty thousand ethnic Gypsies who were imprisoned and exterminated in Auschwitz and to the quarter million murdered in the forests and ditches of Northern Europe and Russia.” I didn’t know. This is based on a true story, a real family. This novel tells the story of Helene Hanneman
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Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
5 stars!

The most powerful story I have ever read about a mother’s love. I am forever changed by this book.

Helene Hannemann is a loving wife, a nurse and mother of five young children. One morning in 1943, she leaves her apartment to take her four oldest children to school when she is stopped by the German police. She is told she can stay back since she is German, but they have orders from the SS to bring her husband and children into custody immediately, as they are considered “Gypsies”. Devasta
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Mary Beth
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I finished this one a couple days ago. It is an emotional read but a true story. I loved the authors note which told what was true and what was not true. I cried and needed tissues. It was a depressing read but it really did happen so its not going to be unicorns and rainbows. The author did so well getting her facts straight. I wish all author notes was like this one because you get to know what was really true. This was such a fast paced read I finished it in 2 sittings. I felt so sorry for th ...more
Christine
4.5 rounded to 5 stars

I have to admit that around 12% I was more than ready to call it quits with this book. It was breaking my heart in a way that I just didn’t want to continue. Before clicking the Return Loan button, I went back to Goodreads and again read all the 4- and 5-star reviews written by my trusted reader friends. I also turned to Mr. Escobar’s Author’s Note and read that when the publisher heard Helene’s story, he told the author that the world needed to know it. The author then tur
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Diane S ☔
Aug 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Whenever I start a book that is based on a real person, a real family, I feel a deeper sense of responsibilty, as if I am a witness to this particular time of their life. Helene Hannemam, was the wife of a gypsy, the mother of five children, a nurse, and though as an Aryan, she could have saved herself, she did not. She refused to allow the SS to take her husband and her children without taking her. They found themselves in Auschwitz, eventually in the gypsy camp. She would go on to be assigned ...more
Debra
Dec 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Auschwitz stands as a tragic reminder of the terrible potential man has for violence and inhumanity." - Billy Graham

The book begins in 1943 when Helene Hannemann is preparing her five children for school. A knock on the door, changes all their lives forever. It is not a friendly neighbor knocking looking to borrow some milk, no it is the Nazi's and they are there for her gypsy husband and children. Being a German, Helene does not have to go with her family, but she insists. She will not leave h
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leslie
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An absolutely amazing and terribly sad true story of the gypsy camp in Auschwitz. A book which cannot be put down. The author explains any alterations or literary license at the prologue.
Helene Hanneman did exist. In May of 1943 she, on her way to deliver her children to school and herself to work as a nurse, was stopped by the German police. She was forced to return to her apartment where her husband remained with her youngest child. She had been working double shifts to provide for her family
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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Sep 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader by: Angela M
4 powerful stars to Auschwitz Lullaby! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

Auschwitz Lullaby, now available from Thomas Nelson, came highly recommended by my dear Goodreads’ friend, Angela. When she says a book is four or more stars, I don’t miss it. She gave this one 4.5.

My Thoughts:

I never tire of these World War II stories involving the Holocaust. I must sound like a broken record at this point, but I have to say, because of the insurmountable number of people affected, there will always be new perspectives and sto
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Esil
Aug 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Auschwitz Lullaby is yet another heartbreaking and jarring novel depicting the horrors perpetrated by the Nazis. I have trouble with novels based on the Holocaust that use the war as a backdrop for romantic or saccharine stories. But there are some excellent novels based on real events that serve as an important reminder of this dark time in history. Auschwitz Lullaby mostly worked for me. It is based on the true story of Helene who was a German woman married to a Roma man, who at the time was r ...more
Jess☺️
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Auschwitz Lullaby by Mario Escobar is Helene Hannemann story set in one of the most despicable era's in time.
For the kind of book it is it's a fast easy read (that sounds terrible I'm sorry) that once you start you have this need to see the ending and when you do reach the end you realise you've cried or had a large lump in your throat throughout the whole book.(why do we do this to ourselves??)
This book is definitely an emotional rollercoaster anger, sadness , heartache are just a few your goin
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Marialyce
4.5 heart breaking stars

A mother wakes in the morning, prepares for her day with her five children, and then there is pounding upon her door and life turns to the horrific. The world is on fire and now that fire has come to her door. This is the world of the Auschwitz Lullaby: A Novel


Helene Hannemann is a young German mother of five. She is caught up in the conflict that is raging and is married to a Romani man, a gypsy, a person, a race, the SS and Hitler has determined needs to be caught, con
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Darryl Greer
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Some historians estimate that between 220,000 and 500,000 Romani were killed by the Germans and their collaborators in World War II – 25% to over 50% of the estimate of just under one million Roma in Europe at the time. Later research estimates the death toll to be about 1.5 million of about 2 million Roma. As with anything to do with the Holocaust, the figures are staggering whatever the exact numbers. With that background Mario Escobar, in his novel "Auschwitz Lullaby" has focussed on one part ...more
Sharon Metcalf
Aug 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2018
Stephen King is quoted as categorising three types of terror. The gross-out. The horror. The terror. Personally, I'm not into any of these things but Mario Escobar's novel of historical fiction plonked me firmly into a place where all three were daily facts of life. This was real horror on a level fiction doesn't go close to.

The place? Auschwitz.
The novel? Auschwitz Lullaby.


Helene Hannemann was a German woman, married to the love of her life, and mother of five children. It just so happened he
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Tammy
Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: release-2018
5 ☆ Auschwitz Lullaby is a heart-wrenching treasure based on the TRUE story of Helene Hannemann, an Aryan German mother of 5 who was married to a Roma. When the Germans who were rounding up gypsies came knocking on her door in 1943 to collect her husband and children she follows them into the trains cattle car immediately giving herself a death sentence just to be with her family.
After days in the stench filled cattle car thirsty, hungry and watching people die along their journey they finally
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Samantha
Aug 26, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: wwii
I'm a bit shocked by the overwhelmingly positive reviews for this book. I immediately downloaded it upon reading the summary of Helene's story: married to a gypsy, she chooses a Nazi concentration camp with her five children over freedom. This promised to be an emotive ride....except it wasn't.

I'm not sure if the emotion was lost in translation, but the ingredients are here to leave the reader in tears. Helene receives some privileges in Birkenau due to her status as an Aryan and a nurse, Howeve
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Crumb
Mar 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully Written and Intensely Heartbreaking..
My soul is forever altered.

More to Come.
Brenda
Sep 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Brenda by: Angela M
Removed from her home in Germany, it was 1943 and the police were taking all gypsies to rehouse them. Although Helene Hannemann was German, her husband and therefore her five children were gypsies. Helene would not leave them – as a mother, her determination to look after her children was paramount.

The long, arduous, filthy and traumatic train journey eventually stopped at Auschwitz, which was to be Helene’s home for the next sixteen months. The horrors would be revealed in an instant to the sh
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Anna
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Based on the true story of Helene Hannemann. Helene was German, but had married a Romani man, Johann. Together they had five children.
What began as an ordinary day quickly became a nightmare when the SS come to their apartment, demanding Johann and the children come with them. As a German, Helene is safe from arrest, but she refuses to leave her children. They are transported to Auschwitz and placed in the Gypsy camp. Helene proves that a mother's love is stronger than hate and terror as exempl
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Alex
Dec 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thanks Christine Terrell for recommending this book. It was a memorable read. I shall never forget the emotions this book brought to me.

I felt sad and depressed about the happenings at Auschwitz. As I reached the final chapters, I dreaded about what I might encounter. I consoled myself stating that the characters were fictious. But the afterword just broke my soul. To realise that this was a true story and the characters Helene Hannemann and her children and poor husband Johann were all real (as
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Jean
Apr 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Auschwitz Lullaby . The title sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it? The world cannot, must not, forget what happened at Auschwitz and other Nazi extermination camps during World War II. But “Lullaby”? A gentle, quiet song to send children to sleep. I learned, however, what an appropriate title this is for a beautifully written fictional diary of a real woman who was arrested with her husband and five children and spent a year in Auschwitz II, Birkenau, in southern Poland. Mario Escobar portray ...more
Deanne Patterson
This is an incredibly hard review to write because of the emotion invested in reading this. I just finished reading an incredibly heart-wrenching book that is based upon the life and story of Helene Hannemann and her 5 children. She was a German woman married to a Gypsy man. Her husband and her 5 children being gypsies are sent to Auschwitz and held in the Gypsy camp at Birkenau. Now she was German and not required to go with them but being a mother you don't just let you children go off on thei ...more
Stephanie Anze
“Sometimes we have to lose everything to find what is most important. When life robs us of what we thought we could not live without and leaves us standing naked before reality, the essential things tht had always been invisible take on their true value.”

Helene Hannemann is preparing her five children for school early one morning when she hears a knock on her door. It is the Nazis with an order to take the five children and her husband into custody. Helene's husband is of Romani descent and as
...more
Lisa
Sep 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads
I really wanted to like this book more. The premise of a German mother following her 1/2 gypsy children to Auschwitz made me eager to read this. Of all the WWII historical fiction that I've read, none have dared to approach the story of Josef Mengele. When he gives the main character the role of establishing a kindergarten in Auschwitz, it seems as if there might be some hope, but readers will know this is not going to end well. Unfortunately, I felt like the writing was choppy in telling the st ...more
Jeanette Lewis
Oct 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
The author has recreated a beautiful but harrowing account of the interment into Auschwitz of German born, blue eyed, Helene Hannemann who as a young woman fell in love and married a man of Romani (gypsy) heritage. Helene is initially offered the chance by the Nazis to remain and not be taken as prisoner but how could a mother of five and one with a strong love for her husband stay, not ever to know the plight of her family. The Nazis did not generally discriminate when it came to mixed marriage ...more
Staci
Oct 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018
A sobering novel about Helene Hannemann. Helene is a German nurse married to a Gypsy. She and her husband have five children. When the SS gives orders to remove her husband and children from their home, she chooses to go with them. All seven of them are taken to Auschwitz.

Helene has the opportunity to bring a small amount of light in such a dark place. She demonstrates courage and love.

This novel is based on the journal entries Helene made during part of her time at Auschwitz. An intriguing part
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Angela
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was ok
Although I appreciated that this was based upon a true story, the tone of this book was way too happy for the subject matter. For example one of the prisoners of Auschwitz actually says, “I’m going to miss my barracks”. Really?
Aaron S
3 stars.
Helene’s heroics-5 stars.
The presentation and writing-2 stars.
I’m sorry. Too many contradictions. Too many cliches.
Pamela
Powerfully compelling, heartbreaking and yet uplifting.

"Sometimes we have to lose everything to find what is most important. When life robs us of what we thought we could not live without and leaves us standing naked before reality, the essential things that had always been invisible take on their true value.

Motherhood never stood taller. Faith never stronger, or unwaivering.

"My family is here. I can't leave without them. I'm a mother, Herr Doktor. You all wage your wars for grand ideals, you
...more
Cyndi
Oct 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Helene is a German woman whose only crime is that she married a gypsy man and bore is children, an act considered despicable by the Nazis. One day Helene’s children and husband are sentenced to the Auschwitz concentration camp and Helene, in a desperate act of unselfish motherhood, refuses to leave their side. In Auschwitz, Helene becomes a hero by running a kindergarten for the children, the only slim ray of light for them in utterly desolate circumstances. She is also one the few who bravely c ...more
Marilyn
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Auschwitz Lullaby by Mario Escobar portrayed a mother's unconditional and encompassing love for her children above all else. This was a story based on a German woman, Helene Hannemann's life. Helene Hannemann was married to Johann, a talented violinist of Roma gypsy descent. Together they had five children including a pair of twins. Helene was a nurse. One morning Helene and her older children were just about to leave their apartment for school and work when they were stopped by some German sold ...more
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Mario Escobar Golderos has a degree in History, with an advanced studies diploma in Modern History. He has written numerous books and articles about the Inquisition, the Protestant Reformation, and religious sects. He is the executive director of an NGO and directs the magazine Nueva historia para el debate, in addition to being a contributing columnist in various publications. Passionate about hi ...more

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