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One Step Ahead of Hitler: A Jewish Child's Journey Through France Paperback – September 1, 2010


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--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 213 pages
  • Publisher: Mercer University Press (September 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 088146225X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0881462258
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,758,540 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Fred Gross, a graduate of New York University, was a reporter for the Journal-Courier, a daily newspaper in New Haven, Connecticut, and has been a public-relations specialist for nearly thirty years, specializing in education. Gross has been actively involved in the Jewish community in Louisville, Kentucky. He has taught a Holocaust curriculum to Sunday school students, and for years has also shared his story with middle and high school students. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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It's a fast read & fascinating.
caring person
Fred Gross is a beautiful writer and his talent for weaving living, breathing images with his words is enviable.
Michelle M. Kasten
This book tells of an extraordinary true story and also very moving and is beautifully written.
dk

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Bernard Gross on April 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I'll preface this review by revealing that the author is my father's first cousin. Which makes it all the more
surprising to me that this fascinating account of a family's successful flight from Hitler during World War II
is beautifully written. It's a suspenseful voyage that is stranger than fiction, and a testament to the value of
family and the determination of the oppressed to reach freedom. It's entirely appropriate for younger readers,
and a rare Holocaust story with a happy ending. An inspiring true story that you will want to finish in one
reading.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sheldon Roskin on May 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Full disclosure: I met the Gross Family in the late 40s when they became our neighbors in The Bronx. In time, Leo, the middle brother became my dearest and closest friend.I recall having a superficial knowledge of the family's escape from the Nazis but after reading Fred Gross' enthralling account of their situation it only further confirms that truth is far more stranger - and intriguing - than fiction. This mile-a-minute retelling of how the family split up - then reunited - is a compelling, can't-put-down thriller of a book. Fred Gross' work is a heartfelt tribute to all those who made it - and those who didn't.It is living, vibrant history played out by a normal family who wouldn't be destroyed.
SHELDON ROSKIN
SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. B on August 16, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
One Step Ahead of Hitler is a movingly reconstructed memoir of a time, beginning in May 1940, when the author (age three and a half) and his family first flee the German Army's approach to Antwerp, Belgium (where the family had fled from Germany in 1924 to escape Nazi thugs). With the help of his mother and siblings many years after the War, author Fred Gross fills in the parts he could not hope to remember at such an early age (although by the time WWII ends, Gross, almost 9, is better able to recall his own personal history). This approach is not with pain--Gross' mother, Nacha, and brothers Leo and Sam, often would just as soon forget such painful memories (Fred recalls that his mother "didn't like to remember some things"). But Fred's persistence allows him to detail his family's perilous voyage across France--what Gross calls "our six-year journey dodging the Nazis"---and to find out many other facets of his family's history that he never knew.

And a perilous journey it is. Gross has chosen his title well. For over two years his family never really 'escapes' from the Germans, that is, crosses over to safety in England or America or some other place out of harm's way. Instead, the family, in a verve-wracking game of cat and mouse, just manages to stay "one step ahead" of the ever advancing Germans and their minions. There are plenty of close calls. Traveling in a refugee caravan at the start of the War, the family is repeatedly strafed. [One of Gross' most vivid early memories is being tossed into a ditch and protectively smothered by his mother.] The family flees to Paris, then Bordeaux, hoping to escape into Portugal via Spain, only to find the border closely guarded.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By caring person on July 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book shares the holocaust experience of a very young, sensitive child. It's a fast read & fascinating.Well worth reading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lois Raitt on November 12, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read many books on World War II, preferring the non-fiction, of course. This book was different in that, although told by Fred Gross, had so many quotes from his brothers and mother. It was fascinating to know that I was reading a true account of the horrific events that took place in Europe during that time. What probably affected me the most was how those events had an effect on them much later in life. It made it so real to read at the end what happened to other members of his family. To me, this was excellent reading, although I am biased by non-fiction. I felt the need to write a review, which hasn't happened before! I wish I could contact the author to tell him what a profound effect his story had on me. Excellent!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By turtle123 on November 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great autobiographical book telling the seldom told story about the Jewish people's struggle in and around France during WW II. Beautifully written. Interesting read. Thanks.
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