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A Child al Confino: The True Story of a Jewish Boy and His Mother in Mussolini's Italy Hardcover – December 14, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Adams Media; First Edition edition (December 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1440509972
  • ISBN-13: 978-1440509971
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 5.8 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,081,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Most accounts of Holocaust survival are centered on central or eastern Europe, in which the Nazi program of genocide was so explicit. Although Mussolini and his Fascist minions were not necessarily genocidal in intention, they were still virulently anti-Semitic as this engrossing and moving account reveals. Lamet was born in Vienna. When he was seven, his family’s middle-class existence was shattered by the Nazi seizure of Austria. His father fled to Poland, where he presumably perished in a death camp. Lamet and his mother made a harrowing escape to Italy, where they spent months seeking refuge in various isolated mountain villages. They resided in a southern rural hamlet east of Naples until the Allied liberation in 1943. Lamet recounts his mother’s struggles to provide a secure home for her child while both attempt to adjust from their urban, relatively sophisticated background to life in what initially appears to be a bleak, primitive setting. This memoir will be an excellent addition to Holocaust collections. --Jay Freeman

From the Author

A CHILD AL CONFINO is an uplifting book, Although written  about the Holocaust period, it is not a Holocaust book It is a story of hope and love, with much humor and wit in times when sadness and tragedy filled the days of our lives.
The editor of HEED Magazine, Jeffrey Newelt, describes the book as following: "All great Holocaust memoirs make you cry. Not all make you laugh as well, but Eric Lamet does, with a dark, dry humane wit that you can tell served the author during his time as a boy in Mussolini's Italy."
An English College professor indicated: "The tribute to your mother that runs through the book is the finest homage to a mother that I have read since reading 'Promise at Dawn'."
Writing the book for me was a catharsis. I lived through each event as I wrote it, being able to see the people, the venues and the happenings as they had occurred many years before and making the experience of creating this work both sad and happy.

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Customer Reviews

I felt the story was told very well.
Kindle Customer
His story reveals our common humanity, highlights our best, exposes our dark shadow selves, and raises questions of fate and providence.
Carol Olsen
I took a chance on this as a Kindle Free 3-book and am so glad I did.
Athene Five

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

64 of 65 people found the following review helpful By Carol Olsen on January 25, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
I just finished reading A Child al Confino. It is a remarkable story of the resilience of the human spirit in the face of separation, hunger, death, and suspended terror. A Child al Confino provides a precocious child's perspective on the Holocaust and on anti-Semitism in Mussolini's Italy. Author, Eric Kimet, writes with direct experience and vivid detail about the events in Ospedaletto, a tiny backward village in Italy where he and his mom lived under the radar of Nazi Germany. In the style of a novelist, Eric introduces the reader to a cast of colorful characters who form community and forge ties closer than blood. Experience the sights, sounds and tastes of life in exile, where goodwill and animosity are juxtaposed with humor. Lamet's account invites the reader into his very personal journey with old-world hospitality, just as his mother graciously turned scarce scraps into meals for fellow refugees. His story reveals our common humanity, highlights our best, exposes our dark shadow selves, and raises questions of fate and providence. As young Eric playfully marches alongside Mussolini's troops or accepts chocolate and favors from a young Nazi soldier, we see in the face of the enemy our own image.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By A. Crance on January 30, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I just bought an Amazon kindle, and didn't feel like spending MORE money on books. Browsing through the free e-books (however, they were free for a limited time) I found this.

I literally have no put my kindle down in days. This book tells the story from a young boys perspective, where he doesn't quite understand what is going on. The story unravels into an amazing, but obviously difficult, lifetime.

I have enjoyed this book so much, I will buy it hardcover to pass along to friends. You won't regret buying thisb ook.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Patti Taylor on January 31, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book gives a us a new view of what Jews went through during the Holocaust in different parts of Europe not yet told of. You will identify with the questions little Eric must have had from the beginning. Mr. Lamet has shared from his heart, as Anne Frank and Corey Ten Boom have. THANK YOU!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on February 1, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I just finish this book and it was very hard to put down. The story line is about how the human spirtit will over come all obstacles. I was very please with the characters. I felt the story was told very well. I am looking forward to see more work form this author. He did a great job and should be proud of the book and the ability to tell his story.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Sharon Beverly TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 11, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Erich Lifsch'tz, born May 27th, 1930, son of Markus Lifsch'tz and Carlotte Szyfra Brandwein endured 67 months---more than 2000 days---much of his childhood---running, hiding, trying to stay alive. From Vienna to Milan, Paris, Nice, to San Remo and Ospedaletto, we follow "Enrico" and his resourceful, loving and protective mother as they try not to become part of Hitler's hell.
The Lifsch'tzes, an affluent family, owned a hotel in Vienna. Life was filled with all the accoutrements of a privileged lifestyle. Fleeing from the enemy, Lamet describes how one day he turned from a pampered child into one on the run.
We feel "Mutti's" (his mother) courage and determination to keep her only child alive. The reader lives along with Enrico as he shares details of his lost childhood. We come to understand how he learned German, Italian, Spanish, Yiddish and English. Survival. We wish for a happily-ever-after, but we know it can't happen. Sanity intact and free at last, the gift of remaining alive is bittersweet.
I had the good fortune of meeting the author, Eric Lamet, a number of years ago. He's an upbeat and kindly gentleman who, in light of a lost childhood, could easily have been an embittered, angry human being.
His story is unique. If you have read many books about the Holocaust, you may question why you should read yet another one. The answer is, his is the only book ever written about Jews being in the internment camps of Italy. That alone, makes it a significant complement to our knowledge about World War II and a compelling read. Although the circumstances are tragic and sad, Lamet's ability to view life with humor separate his writing from thousands of others. Lamet shares that his mother was frequently asked how they managed to survive.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Wildflower on February 6, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was one of the best books I have read in years.

Eric tells of his lost childhood during WWII and the reader lives his life through every page.

History must be not forgotten. This story has pain, joy, laughter and tragedy. A young boy, who adapted to every situation thrown at him, muddles through 66 months of unknown, cut off from family and news.

I recommend this book to everyone.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By D. T. Socci-Brown on July 20, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am not one who usually reads Non-Fiction. In particular Biography's, but the product review for this book drew me in, and I downloaded it to read when I had nothing better on my Kindle. Of course I always have a slew of books on my Kindle but decided to read this one anyways, and I am so glad that I did.

This Book is about a Family of the Jewish faith, who because of the Nazi seizure of Austria during WWII, must split up to remain safe. The Mother and her son Eric escape to Italy from Vienna during WWII. The Father flees to Poland.They leave behind family and friends and the life they knew, and embark on a most remarkable journey of strength and spirit.
I am amazed at how vivid Eric Lamets memories are. How powerful his descriptions after all these years, some pleasant and almost ordinary....others horrific or heartbreaking. For an example, his description of the importance of Chestnuts to the villagers lively hood and the ways they were used was fascinating and heartwarming. Or his memory of the ultra rustic dwellings, sporting indoor outhouses and very little else. Then on to the despair during the time the German's occupied the little town of Ospedaletto where they were staying, when The Jewish internees remained constantly indoors out of fear. Followed by the bleakness in the barren monastery where the refugees fled when Ospedaletto was no longer safe. The stark reality of living in bedbug infested rooms with no extra clothing or blankets, or even food. To the joy felt when the Americans came and the refugees found that they were free again...and the bittersweet reunion with his Papa and again with his step father.

My one issue is the way the Author seems to go from one subject to another without any real flow.
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