Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Alice's Piano: The Life of Alice Herz-Sommer Hardcover – March 13, 2012
|New from||Used from|
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
“Most moving is the story throughout of her loving bond with her son and how she saved him. No politics, intolerance, or self-righteousness, no talk of revenge, always the rigor and joy of music.” ―Booklist (Starred Review)
“A miraculous journey of mother and son for whom music provided strength and nourishment.” ―Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
MELISSA MÜLLER is an author and journalist living in Munich. Her collaboration with Traudl Junge became an international bestseller. She is also the author of Anne Frank: The Biography.
REINHARD PIECHOCKI is the author of a number of works of cultural history and a close friend of Alice Herz-Sommer's for many years.
ALICE HERZ-SOMMER, at 107 years old, is the oldest living Holocaust survivor. She lives in London.
If you’re the author, publisher, or rights holder of this book, let ACX help you produce the audiobook.Learn more.
Top Customer Reviews
Alice's Piano was first published in English as The Garden of Eden in Hell, 2006, and remains the only biography authorized by the great Czech pianist herself. Mueller recounts Alice's early life, musical studies, marriage, and then deportation to Thereizenstadt, the Nazi propaganda camp where she performed concerts. Mueller's immersion in the lives of Anne Frank and Traudl Junge has given her extraordinary insight into the mindless bureaucracy and cruelty of the Hitler's willing collaborators. What makes Mueller's thoroughly researched account rise to the level of genius, however, is how she intersperses throughout the book Sommer's musical analysis of each of Frédéric Chopin's Twenty-Four Etudes, which Alice believed saved her from certain death in the camp. The incipit of each Etude is printed on the page. The result, especially to this musician-reader, is a stunningly emotional evocation of the great tragedy of Thereizenstadt: the extermination of generations of composers, conductors, opera singers, instrumentalists, and actors, who happened to be Jewish.
That Alice Herz-Sommer remained sane, resumed teaching and performing, and continues to see life as good at the age of 108 makes her story must reading for anyone who cares about life, about music, and about forgiveness.
--Margaret Shannon, Washington, DC
I highly recommend this book...it is unfogetably magnificent...!
Melissa Muller and Reinhard Piechocki, the biographers narrate Alice's prodigious talent and feelings in the book ALICE'S PIANO. In Theresienstadt many people were dying of infectious diseases. Bugs, fleas and lice were never defeated, the inmates were defeated. However, when Alice practiced she forgot about the world around her. She played from passion and sheer joy in music; it was her door to paradise. Music has been her source of strength all her life, her safe haven. As the defeat for Germany drew nearer in 1944, most "residents" from Theresienstadt were sent to extermination camps. Alice's husband was among those. After the war, Alice found out that her husband had survived the death-march from Auschwitz to Dachau, but died there of typhus. In May 1945 Theresienstadt was liberated, one out of one hundred inmates survived. It is heartbreaking to realize that among the millions that the Nazis murdered there were so many talented people.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have read many books about the holocaust. After personally visiting Terezin, the concentration camp near Prague a few years ago, her words took me there and what it must have... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Mr Gadget
I love reading personal holocaust stories - this one is a bit difficult to get through because of all the musical references and sideline stories - but is good story.Published 2 months ago by personal feedback
This story gives insight to how a person whose world was turned upside down, survived through her love of music.Published 7 months ago by Donna W.
This heartbreaking yet wonderfully beautiful story was the perfect book to read before heading on a trip to Prague. Read morePublished 9 months ago by DDT
No one should have to endure what the remarkable woman did She was caught up in the worst place and still managed to survive. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Sharon
Having visited Prague and Terezin I was very interested to read this book. I was well written and a balanced account of the time. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Terri H.
What could have been a great book is merely an interesting book. I don't know who did the translation, but it is a poor one. Read morePublished 18 months ago by casinitaly