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Born Survivors: Three Young Mothers and Their Extraordinary Story of Courage, Defiance, and Hope by [Wendy Holden]

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Born Survivors: Three Young Mothers and Their Extraordinary Story of Courage, Defiance, and Hope Kindle Edition

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Editorial Reviews


"An astonishing and deeply moving work." ---Booklist Starred Review --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

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"An astonishing and deeply moving work."--Booklist (starred review)

"An engrossing, intense, and highly descriptive narrative chronicling the ghastly conditions three pregnant women suffered through at the hands of the Nazis."--Kirkus Reviews

Among the millions of Holocaust victims sent to Auschwitz II-Birkenau in 1944, Priska, Rachel, and Anka each pass through the concentration camp's infamous gates with a secret. Separated from their husbands and strangers to one another, they are pregnant and scared. After losing so many other loved ones to the Nazis, these women are determined to hold on to all they have left: their lives and those of their unborn babies.

Born Survivors follows them as, against all the odds, they give birth to their babies and go on to build new lives with their children after World War II. Theirs are stories of hardships and miracles as they narrowly escape the clutches of Dr. Josef Mengele at Auschwitz; conceal their condition after they are sent to a Nazi slave-labor camp, where they are half-starved and almost worked to death; and as the Allies close in, survive a seventeen-day train journey to Mauthausen in Austria. By the time they arrive, all three babies have been born--but because the camp has run out of Zyklon B, their lives and those of their mothers are saved. Sixty-five years later, the three "miracle babies" share a remarkable, inspirational story of three mothers who defied death at the hands of the Nazis to give their children life.--Contra Costa Times --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00NVLNZ8Y
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Harper; Reprint edition (May 5, 2015)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ May 5, 2015
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 19024 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ On Kindle Scribe
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 400 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 4,428 ratings

About the author

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Wendy Holden (aka Taylor Holden) is a novelist, non-fiction author, historical biographer and ghostwriter as well as a former journalist for the London Daily Telegraph. Her books have sold two million copies, have been adapted for television and radio, and some have been adopted into the schools curriculum. Two of her titles are about to be made into major Hollywood films.

Since leaving newspapers in 1996, Wendy has written more than forty books, including sixteen international bestsellers and the acclaimed novel The Sense of Paper, published by Random House, New York, now available as an ebook. Her bestselling title is Born Survivors, the true story of three young mothers who hid their pregnancies from the Nazis and gave birth in the camps. This has now been published in 22 countries and translated into 16 languages and was released in a special VE Day 75 edition in 2020. She also wrote the memoir Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day and his Life Lessons with Captain Sir Tom Moore, both of which became top ten bestsellers and remained in the charts for over eight months.

A reporter for eighteen years, Wendy covered news events at home and abroad, including conflicts in the Middle East, Communist Europe, and Northern Ireland. Her non-fiction titles have chiefly been the autobiographies of remarkable women, many with wartime experiences such as Zuzana Ruzickova, who survived three concentration camps and slave labour to become one of the world's leading musicians (now an award winning documentary), and Edna Adan Ismail, an inspirational midwife, First Lady, civil war survivor, and builder of hospitals. Wendy also wrote Tomorrow to be Brave, about the only woman in the French Foreign Legion during World War II (soon to be a film). Her book Behind Enemy Lines was about a young Jewish woman who repeatedly crossed German lines as a spy (now an award winning animation); and Til the Sun Grows Cold tells of a British mother whose daughter was killed in troubled Sudan. She also wrote Lady Blue Eyes, the memoir of Frank Sinatra's widow Barbara, A Lotus Grows in the Mud, the best-selling autobiography of Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn, and Memories Are Made of This, a biography of Dean Martin as seen through the eyes of his daughter Deana.

She penned Ten Mindful Minutes with Goldie Hawn, an international bestseller on mindfulness for parents, and she wrote an ebook for children and adults entitled Mr. Scraps about a dog caught up in the London Blitz. In 2012 she conceived and wrote the bestselling memoir of Uggie, the dog from the Oscar winning movie The Artist, published in 12 countries, and she also wrote Haatchi & Little B, the remarkable story of the relationship between a disabled boy and his three legged-dog, which was a number 1 bestseller in the UK, Portugal, and the US as it melted hearts around the world.

Other works have included the bestselling novelisations of the films The Full Monty and Waking Ned, as well as an Antarctic travel guide with comedian Billy Connolly. She wrote Smile Though Your Heart Is Breaking with Pauline Prescott, and Heaven and Hell with Don Felder, co-founder of The Eagles. Her book Shell Shock, a searing investigation into the trauma of conflict from the World War One to the Gulf War, was published in conjunction with a four-part television documentary.

Several of her books have been serialised in national newspapers and magazines around the globe, selected for audio extracts on BBC Radio's Book of the Week and elsewhere, adopted for the curriculum in schools and colleges and transferred to both commercial television and radio drama. Four of her books have been optioned for film. She also writes screenplays, is an international public speaker, literary festival chair, and teaches creative writing online and at exclusive venues in Italy, Dubai, and around the UK.

Wendy divides her time between the UK, US and Italy but lives mostly in Suffolk, England, with her husband and dogs where she likes to relax in her award-winning garden. She also writes occasional articles for newspapers and magazines, including The Guardian, Daily Mail and The Lady. Follow her on Twitter @wendholden, on Instagram @wendyholdenbestsellingauthor, via her website, or her Facebook fan page ( She is an occasional podcaster ( She has her own Youtube channel -, is her own literary agent, mentor to aspiring writers, and owns a company that develops and publishes e-books and book-related apps.

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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
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H M Gissing
3.0 out of 5 stars Where is God?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Heartbreaking
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is a superb book which I cannot recommend highly enough
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4.0 out of 5 stars A moving and informative read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing courage.
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