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A Jew Must Die Paperback – April 1, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
In the Swiss market town Payerne, local Nazi leader Fernand Ischi blames the 500 unemployed out of 5000 citizens on the Jews. He encourages teaching them a lesson for being God's abominations by taking their property. On April 16, 1942, Swiss Nazis salute the Fuhrer and his final solution when they persuade sixty years old Jewish cattle merchant Arthur Bloch to enter an empty stable. Once inside they hammer him to death with a crowbar and cut up his body placing the parts into milk containers to float away on the nearby lake on Hitler's birthday. None even show the slightest remorse as Jews deserve this treatment as Ischi believes the first sacrifice takes him on his way to becoming the regional gauleiter leader of the Swiss Nazi Party. That is until the containers fail to float away; Kaddash is prayed for Arthur as it will be for six million others for eternity.
Based on a true horror story just like Jacques Chessex's previous tale The Vampire of Ropaz, A Jew Must Die is a gripping translation of a superb French drama that will have readers shocked that such a hate crime occurred. The cast drives the novellas as the audience sees what motivates the monster and his goons to violence, the regional Jewish community to fear, and the local townsfolk to horror. Without preaching, Monsieur Chessex leaves readers to wonder why God tolerates acts of intolerance in his name.
First, the style. The author follows a pattern of setting a bucolic and idealized general milieu; of unspoiled Alpine nature, of the picture-book town, of its sturdy inhabitants. He then focuses a bit more closely: the town itself, as beneath its cuckoo-clock exterior rests a foundation of bourgeois values. With a bit of deeper digging, Chessex reveals a bedrock of reactionary and generally unsavory prejudices and self-satisfaction. This stylistic approach repeats through the story.Read more ›
I love historical novels based on reality and this book hits the spot. It educated me on some of the things happening in Switzerland during World War II, things I never read anywhere else, especially about a supposed "neutral" country. It certainly opened my eyes.
I also now understand why the Swiss didn't like Mr. Chessex little book,
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a very short but poignant story of Nazi's and hatred of the Jews. Great and thoughtful read.Published 14 months ago by marie r williams
If the story were not based on fact, one would be a bit skeptical. The shear callous, disregard for the humanity of a person is an assault on the senses.Published on June 3, 2014 by cooperkat10