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Misha: A Memoire of the Holocaust Years Hardcover – April, 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Mount Ivy Pr; 1St Edition edition (April 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0963525778
  • ISBN-13: 978-0963525772
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,364,576 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Its too bad this talent to write was used in such a decieptful way.
Ezra N. Johnson
"This story is mine. It is not actually reality, but my reality, my way of surviving," Defonseca said in a statement given by her lawyers to The Associated Press.
A. Dent
I am sad that the author felt the need to embellish her story, which could have stood on its truthful merits alone.
Marianna R. Steriadis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 59 people found the following review helpful By A. Dent #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 1, 2008
[...]

Writer admits Holocaust book is not true

By MELISSA TRUJILLO, Associated Press Writer Fri Feb 29, 5:12 PM ET

BOSTON - Almost nothing Misha Defonseca wrote about herself or her horrific childhood during the Holocaust was true.

She didn't live with a pack of wolves to escape the Nazis. She didn't trek 1,900 miles across Europe in search of her deported parents, nor kill a German soldier in self-defense. She's not even Jewish.

Defonseca, a Belgian writer now living in Massachusetts, admitted through her lawyers this week that her best-selling book, "Misha: A Memoire of the Holocaust Years," was an elaborate fantasy she kept repeating, even as the book was translated into 18 languages and made into a feature film in France.

"This story is mine. It is not actually reality, but my reality, my way of surviving," Defonseca said in a statement given by her lawyers to The Associated Press.

"I ask forgiveness to all who felt betrayed. I beg you to put yourself in my place, of a 4-year-old girl who was very lost," the statement said.

[...]

Follow the link for the full, sordid story.
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42 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Truthteller on February 29, 2008
This is a fascinating story. But it's not a true story. The author finally admitted that she made it all up. The truth is after the author's parents, non-Jewish resistance fighters in Belgium, were arrested in World War II, she moved in with some relatives who treated her as a traitor. This made her "feel Jewish" and she made up her story to feel better about herself. A shame, an insult and an affront to all those Jewish people who truly suffered. (But nonetheless quite a moneymaker for the author who, before her confession, got a judge to award her tens of millions of dollars from the publisher for unpaid profits from the book.)
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64 of 76 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 2, 2001
Uplifting and entertaining though this story may be, it is impossible to tell how much of it is true. Let's face it, no-one has ever been brought up by wolves, beautiful idea though it is. I would love to believe that wolves would take care of children, bring them up and feed them, but they don't.
There aren't any properly documented examples of wolf-children. It is an urban myth. Most of the "examples" can be traced back to some carnival barker trying to sell tickets to see somebody like "Pogo, the dog-faced boy". Just because a 19th century carny hustler says that a kid was brought up by wolves doesn't make it true.
I'm afraid that Misha either has a faulty memory or is telling an untruth here.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A. Ruiz on March 1, 2008
I would like to see the reaction of some of the readers who have reviewed this book over the past ten years. The truth has been revealed. Misha's real name is Monique De Wael and her family wasn't Jewish. She made up this "inspiring" story and presented it as authobiographical. This book shows how easily the public's emotions can be manipulated by unscrupulous writers and how they can be deceived into accepting unprovable facts such as wolves raising children.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 8, 1999
The recent allegations against the truthfulness of Binjamin Wilkomirski's "Fragments" should make us hesitate to accept this story as completely nonfictional. It is hardly surprising that a tragedy of the magnitude of the Holocaust will inspire some accounts which are either fabricated or embroidered in ways that will appeal to a wide public. It is not impossible that Misha Defonseca survived alone in the woods, but improbable that she was adopted by wolves as she claims. There are much better books for people who want to know what happened to children in the Holocaust. I recommend books by Eva Kor, Magda Denes, Cordelia Edvardson and Livia Jackson.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Ezra N. Johnson on February 29, 2008
News came out today that the author admitted this story is completely false. Its too bad this talent to write was used in such a decieptful way.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By K. Hagy on February 29, 2008
This is not true... even the author has admitted it...

Almost nothing Misha Defonseca wrote about herself or her horrific childhood during the Holocaust was true.

She didn't live with a pack of wolves to escape the Nazis. She didn't trek 1,900 miles across Europe in search of her deported parents, nor kill a German soldier in self-defense. She's not even Jewish.

Defonseca, a Belgium writer now living in Massachusetts, admitted through her lawyers this week that her best-selling book, "Misha: A Memoire of the Holocaust Years," was an elaborate fantasy she kept repeating, even as the book was translated into 18 languages and made into a feature film in France.

"This story is mine. It is not actually reality, but my reality, my way of surviving," Defonseca said in a statement given by her lawyers to The Associated Press.

"I ask forgiveness to all who felt betrayed. I beg you to put yourself in my place, of a 4-year-old girl who was very lost," the statement said.
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25 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A. W. on March 1, 2008
I hope Amazon and other vendors immediately remove the book(s) from their inventory. People were actually inspired by this story, based on it supposedly being true. For some, it makes one question other stories written in true format.

Indeed a shame.
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