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De meisjes van Ravensbrück
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De meisjes van Ravensbrück

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  12,105 ratings  ·  947 reviews
1989, Berlijn. De Muur is gevallen en Berlijn viert feest. Miriam is uit een lastig huwelijk gevlucht om voor haar stervende vader Henryk te zorgen. Ze voelt zich schuldig dat ze hem al jaren maar heel weinig heeft gezien; hij was het niet eens met haar huwelijk.

Dan ziet ze tijdens het verzorgen een kamptatoeage op zijn arm en kantelt alles wat ze over hem dacht te weten.
Paperback, 352 pages
Published March 17th 2020 by Luitingh Sijthoff (first published September 1st 2019)
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Betsy It does have descriptions of sexual encounters and I think some language.

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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  12,105 ratings  ·  947 reviews

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Well, this was a terrible conglomeration of infidelity, hidden letters, domestic abuse, the Holocaust, and a dying father all rolled into one book that I absolutely would have DNF'd if I could. I did not intentionally read two books about the Holocaust back to back, unfortunately both book clubs I am in happened to pick a Holocaust book this month (the other book was The Tattooist of Auschwitz). And out of the two I would recommend reading neither, but I would kind of recommend burning this one. ...more
This centers around Miriam who is the present day character, more so than focusing on the past and Henryk. Miriam is not only given more chapters than Henryk, but her chapters are also notably longer. The dictation of Miriam's chapters typically either focus on her repetitive inquiry into the letters she found that are related to her father (Henryk) -or- her personal life and the problems that she has with her abusive husband. Henryk's chapter's typically focus on his own marital problems rather ...more
Feb 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting WW2 story told across dual timelines. Miriam is caring for her dying father, Henrik, shortly after the fall of the Berlin wall. She’s also in an abusive marriage. When she discovers a prisoner’s uniform, and a collection of letters she realizes are from her father’s mistress from decades before, she sets out to unravel the story of what happened in the last days of the war. Poignant and tragic. Without getting into spoilers, this had some interesting historical tidbits, s ...more
If you've just picked this one as your August 'Amazon Prime First Read' then you are in for a treat - eventually. The first quarter of this book is slow - really slow - and I wondered if I'd made a mistake in choosing it. That said, once it gets going, it's as if it's a completely different book.

Two characters tell their stories directly - Miriam and her father Henryk - and a third tells hers via letters hidden inside the seams and pockets of an inmate's uniform from one of Germany's concentrati
Erika Vopnford
Aug 29, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was barely enjoyable. I started reading it because it was supposed to be a historical fiction about the Rabbit Girls during WWII. Unfortunately, this is not accurate. The author tries to fit too many genres in one book, making it busy an unenjoyable. The plot jumps around quite a bit, which is usually not a problem, but in this case the story became confusing at points and predictable throughout.
Page Turner
The book had a slow start and I found the plot was convoluted and difficult to follow at times. Towards the end things moved fast and it started to make more sense. The isolated moments began to fit together.
Michaela Savage-Clowes
I picked this book as my ‘Amazon first reads’ for August, not really expecting too much and then not able to stop reading.

It’s a story that will stay with me.
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I didn't hate it, but this book is very confused about what type of book it wants to be.

Is it a psychological thriller about a physically and emotionally abused woman being gaslit by her abusive husband while she cares for her dying father? Yes, but it resolves so abruptly (after both rape and attempted murder) that it didn't really feel very realistic. (The '80s era German police being very, "whatever, you probably brought this on yourself" did feel pretty realistic though, based on what I know
Sep 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The trauma of a country gone insane. The trauma created by those who prey on others. The trauma of those who bear witness. The trauma of those who survive. The strength of the human spirit despite evil in this world. This novel covers it all.
Erika Demaggio
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one will get you. I normally power through books like this in a day or two, but the dark reality of the Holocaust that this book highlights made me slow down and take it in pieces. Even taking a day off in between sometimes. I’m not a crier while reading, but as a mother, this book got me a few times. An important look at the realities of the time, but a hard one nonetheless.
Stephanie Anze
"To look back is to relive. To relive is to die a thousand deaths again."

2.5 stars

Miriam is caring for Henryk, her father, while he is sick and most likely living out his last days. While sitting by his side, Miriam hears her father call out for Frieda. Miriam does not know who this woman is and looks through the house for clues. She comes across an old and battered dress with letters hidden in the dress seams. Their content of these reveal a history that her parents kept hidden from Miriam all
A deeply moving and upsetting story about the suffering of the so-called Rabbit Girls in Ravensbruck concentration camp. The narrative moves between the unhappy Miriam, writing in Germany in 1989 as the Berlin Wall tumbled, the letters of Frieda, smuggled out of Ravensbruck, and the reminiscences of Henryk, father of Miriam and the lover of Frieda, who is now facing his death. Parts are more successful than most with the most memorable sections preserved for Frieda. By contrast, Miriam remains d ...more
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Whiplash and Incongruity

I would need to read the book description again in order to see what I can write without giving any spoilers but I failed to see how a book that was VERY loosely connected to Mengele’s rabbits could be related to domestic abuse. Or how a prisoner in a concentration camp would waste space on sparse paper to write in vague, poetic prose rather than saying what she needed to say. The connections, even within the same story and timeline were far too tenuous and gave me whipla
Sep 20, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-my-kindle
The story opens with Miriam caring for her dying father, Henryk, just at the time the Berlin Wall is coming down. She finds a tattoo on her dad and realizes he was in a camp and then in a closet she finds a woman's uniform from a concentration camp with letters hidden in the seams. I would maybe give the book 2.5 stars which goes against what everyone else seems to rate it but I picked up the book after reading The Lilac Girls and hoping for more information on the Rabbit Girls of Ravensbruck. I ...more
Meg Lelvis
Really two and a half stars for this. I thought the focus would be on the women in Ravensbruck and their stories, but Miriam's story overshadowed it. I never could understand what Miriam's mental problem was, although I skimmed some parts I could've missed it. I thought she may be an unreliable narrator, in that she seemed to be delusional and seemed to have hallucinations. Why did she tolerate her abusive husband?
I just hurried through to get to the ending of this sometimes confusing and convo
Anna Ellory lives in Bath and has just completed her MA in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University. Her book is poignant, highlighting how one fictional family was affected by the Holocaust.

December 1989. The Wall between East and West Germany is open. Miriam is taking care of her dying father.

1942. Henryk is Miriam's father. He is reminiscing about meeting Frieda, a student of his. All of Henryk's thoughts are from the past. He is now dying and wondering whatever became of Frieda. He needs to f
Judi Easley
Sep 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: WWII history lovers
Recommended to Judi by: n/a
The Rabbit Girls
Anna Ellory
Lake Union Pub, Sep 1, 2019
396 pages
Historical, WWII
Purchased for Kindle app

The cover is perfect for this book. The feather is the one Miriam puts in the door so that she can tell if anyone has been in the apartment. It took me a while to even notice the train tracks and building at the bottom, but they fit the story as well since everyone gets taken away in cattle cars. The blue is a shade that is cold and disheartening and spattered with blood. This is very fitt
Mandi Grasmeyer
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Absolutely loved the intertwined stories, the history, the twists, the characters... Such a great read! See full review at: ...more
Brenda Swanson
Sep 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love World War 2 historical fiction, and I enjoyed this book, but I wouldn’t put it up there with books like Sarah’s Key or the Lilac Girls. The book alternated between chapters in which letters were read that were written while in a concentration camp and chapters which were written about the main character’s current life in 1989 in which she was attempting to leave her abusive husband. Although some may find the chapters about Miriam’s current life to be distracting I actually felt like they ...more
Kaisha (The Writing Garnet)
Al reviews can be found on my blog at

Where to begin? On subject matter alone due to a large portion of the story being set in Auschwitz, 'The Rabbit Girls' is a devastating read. Yet on the other hand, Anna Ellory's novel is heartbreakingly beautiful because of the characters poignant memories.

Set in Berlin in the late 1980's, 'The Rabbit Girls' follows the life of Miriam as she cares for her dying father. Unfortunately, the impending death of her father, H
Linda Griffiths
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Superb writing

I only chose this book because it was on offer! After reading just a few pages I was hooked, and would have happily paid the full price to read more. The book draws you into the characters from the beginning, and doesn't waste time or words in painting the scenes before you. Yes, it is a difficult read in parts, but that is to be expected given the subject. How one nation could divide itself , with such cruelty, persecution and destruction. Never to be forgotten!
Susan and Nigel Draper
Haunting tale

The Rabbit Girls tells the story of Miriam who goes to care for her dying father Henryk in Berlin in the days following the fall of the wall that has divided the city since the 1960s. It has the claustrophobic feeling of being in the intense situation of caring for someone who is terminally ill, where outside events are viewed as being almost unreal. Against the backdrop of caring for Henryk, we also find the story of Miriam’s parents during the Second World War when she discovered
Jennifer Mangler
This one starts off slow, and for about 1/4 of the book I was wondering why it was titled The Rabbit Girls because they weren't in it at all. When they finally made their appearance in the book their story grabbed me and the book instantly became more interesting. I wished their story had been the main focus of the book. Instead, they end up serving as inspiration for Miriam. This book is really her story, not theirs. That's too bad, because I found Miriam tiresome.
Namrata Amin
Feb 13, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Apr 02, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nicole Patterson
I loved this book. It took me awhile to get into it but that had nothing to do with the book and more to do with this pandemic. This was a beautiful story. It was a bit complicated in the beginning. Miriam was made out to be crazy, when her husband was the crazy one. Frieda was such a strong women. And Emilie was an even stronger woman. I do wish Miraim would have told her dad the truth in the end but I still loved this book whole heartedly.
Aug 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not great, but not bad. The "Rabbit Girls" refers to women who were used as guinea pigs in the concentration camps. The story concerns a woman in 1989 abused by her husband, who escapes him long enough to care for her dying father. At her father's apartment she uncovers the fact that he has numbers tattooed on his wrist (under his watch band. Why she had been bathing him and tending him for a few weeks without ever removing his watch is a bit of a mystery). She also finds a woman's concentration ...more
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-owned
I enjoyed reading this but it was emotionally tough in some place. Not a light read!
Andrea Galbusieri
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 15, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I did not even make it through this book. I couldn't handle reading it. I thought it would be another great WWII book about love, romance, and sacrifice. But nope. It was about a cowardly man that chose to have an affair and put himself and his wife at risk of being sent to a concentration camp. When a person chooses to get married then he/she should lock his/her heart. If one starts to feel an attraction to another person besides his/her spouse then stay away. If you feel that way, stay away! I ...more
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Play Book Tag: The Rabbit Girls by Anna Ellory, 4 Stars 1 15 Dec 15, 2019 06:25PM  

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