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Final Letters: From Victims of the Holocaust Hardcover – September, 1991

ISBN-13: 978-1557784957 ISBN-10: 1557784957 Edition: 1st American ed
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From Library Journal

This is a compilation of last letters and notes written by Jews who perished in the Holocaust. The writings were gathered from the Yad Vashem Archives in Israel. They were written in desperation and were often dropped from transport trains in the hope that their thoughts and feelings would reach their loved ones in Israel or America. The book can be opened to any page, and the writings will be sure to move the reader. The letters can best be symbolized by one brief document addressed to the unknown and written by simple Jews. Each name is spelled out so that it may be recalled by future generations; the exhortation to remember is par amount. This book provides a pathway into the writings of the Holocaust. It is recommended for most large popular collections; libraries with strong Judaica and Holocaust holdings will surely want it.
- Paul Kaplan, Dakota Cty. Lib., Eagan, Minn.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Universal Sales & Marketing; 1st American ed edition (September 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1557784957
  • ISBN-13: 978-1557784957
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,792,639 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sigrid Olsen on February 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I read this book a few years ago. I've read probably 100+ books on the Holocaust, for all ages and different topics. This is, the most powerful book I have ever read on this subject matter.
The last letters speak for themselves--some are so horrifying that I wish I never read them. I am haunted by the despair and terrible things written in these letters. One letter, in particular, outlining the abuse of little girls by the SS, makes one think that Germany will--and should--be forever stained by its past deeds. I am surprised that few people know about this book.
The letters were hidden, dropped from trains, left with others--most of the writers died and this is their last testament.
This book is the reality, the truth of this time. People with young children should be warned about this book: when you read about the despair of these young parents you won't be able to sleep.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Z Hayes HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 15, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I've been reading and collecting books on the Holocaust for many years, and found this at a used bookstore together with other obscure volumes on the Holocaust.Initially, I thought this would be an interesting read and provide some insights into the emotions felt by the writers of these letters during a dark and difficult period. I was unprepared for the emotional impact these letters had on me! Many of them were filled with such pain and sorrow that I could not help crying thinking of the deep anguish these hapless victims must have felt during those terrible years, the period of the Holocaust.

Some of the letters were written by parents separated from their children (who had found safe refuge far away from the Nazi-controlled territories); some were mere scribbles on post cards by people who had no idea of the horrors that awaited them (those being deported to extermination camps like Auschwitz) - was it better for them not to know of their ultimate fate? There is at times a note of optimism and hope in these letters and postcards;some are final missives written by those who were arrested and convicted of resistance against the Nazis, who were awaiting execution and one notable person is a Wehrmacht sergeant who was executed for rescuing Jews; there are testaments that are much darker in nature - accounts of horrific crimes committed by the Nazis and their collaborators against the Jews, including innocent children. These letters and documents are now kept in the Yad Vashem Archive and serve as "witnesses" to the evil perpetrated by the Nazis during the Holocaust.
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