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Out of the Transylvania Night Paperback – August 17, 2010

4.7 out of 5 stars 54 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Aura's courage shows the degree to which we are all willing to live lives centered on freedom, hope, and an authentic sense of self. Truly a love story! --Nadia Comaneci, Olympic gold medalist

If you grew up hearing names like Tito, Mao, and Ceausescu but really didn't understand their significance, read this book! --Mark Skidmore, Paramount Pictures

If you grew up hearing names like Tito, Mao, and Ceausescu but really didn't understand their significance, read this book! --Mark Skidmore, Paramount Pictures

Review

Aura's courage shows the degree to which we are all willing to live lives centered on freedom, hope, and an authentic sense of self. Truly a love story! —Nadia Comaneci, Olympic Champion

Unforgettable, giving the pioneer spirit courage and a brave heart bravado. —Adrian Maher, Documentary Filmmaker, Discovery Channel

If you grew up hearing names like Tito, Mao, and Ceausescu but really didn't understand their significance, read this book! —Mark Skidmore, Paramount Pictures

A remarkable account erasing a past, but not an identity. Thought -provoking, inspirational, and comforting. —Todd Greenfield, 20th Century Fox

This book is sure to find its place in memorial literature of the world. —Beatrice Ungar, Editor in chief, Hermannstädter Zeitung

I congratulate Aura for this beautiful and courageous book, one that readily showcases the beauty and richness of this culture and people. — Mike Costache, Pres., Miss Universe Romania Organization

Out of the Transylvania Night is a compelling and spelling-binding story of a fiercely independent young woman growing up at the height of worldwide Communist power and then the rapid fall of the Iron Curtain. We must never forget what her story ultimately teaches. —Sharrie Williams, author, The Maybelline Story—and the Spirited Family Dynasty behind It

Under Communism, Aura's family lost its fortune but kept their jewels. Under capitalism, she made a fortune and lost the jewels. And then lost the fortune as well. Such is the paradox found within the pages of this amazing and unforgettable story.—Lindy Hudis, producer, IMPACT Motion Pictures

We all have much to learn about freedom; certainly anyone born without it will search until they find it. This is an incredible story about pain, strength, courage, defiance, and healing.—David Haspel, producer

Out of the Transylvania Night presents an emotional journey through both free and closed societies, revealing how freedom is also found in the self and not only the destination. —Ilie T. Ardelean, founding chairman and president, Romanian-American Professional Network (RAPN)

Out of the Transylvania Night is an exciting and truly memorable search for personal freedom. —Alexander R. Marmureanu, MD, president and CEO, California Heart and Lung Surgery Center, UCLA Medical Center

Out of the Transylvania Night is a deeply moving account of one woman's search for her own identity, firstly under the Communist dictatorship of the ruthlessly oppressive Ceausescu, and, later, as she struggles to maintain her integrity in the face of overwhelming materialism. -Louise Henderson, bookpleasures.com.

(Aura Imbarus Out of the Transylvania Night)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Bettie Youngs Books (September 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984308121
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984308125
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By wanda on November 1, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For the life of me I don't get the 5 star reviews and glowing blogs on GR, Amazon and the web concerning this book. Of course I could not find any actual big time reviewers that had published anything on Out of the Transylvania Night, but even so -- FIVE STARS?? I think not. I saw one reviewer call it a Cinderella story. Huh? It's about as close in theme to Cinderella as War and Peace is to Rapunzel.
I bought this book because there is so little written about the horror of the Ceausescu years and their aftermath that is readable, and I saw all of the glowing reviews. So much for believing everything you read. I learned very little about what I really set out to learn.
To be fair, this is an inspirational story. But it is not a particularly unique memoir, as memoirs go. Recent memoirs of the horrors of living through World War II (When God Looked the Other Way or The Ice Road) are far more inspirational and far better written. If you want to see the human spirit at work, read about starving with your family in a Soviet gulag and surviving. That is transcendent.
My big problem with this book is the way that it is written. Again, to be fair, the author is not a native English speaker, but where it the world was her editor? The narrative rocks along between young adult speak full of idioms and the most purple of purple prose. Examples of the former: "he did not come on to me" "he started his spiel" "we played phone tag" "my water works had dried up" "How could I ever level with her now?" "Can I have a word with you guys? (meaning her parents)." I expect that kind of writing from a teenager, not a grown woman. It really got annoying.
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Format: Kindle Edition
One criteria I have for a 5 Star book is that once done reading I continue to think about what I read. Out of the Transylvania Night by Aura Imbarus is definitely a book that I am still thinking about.

Aura’s memoir of her life in Romania and subsequent immigration to America is remarkable. I must admit my own knowledge of world events is lacking. A revolution in Romania? In fact give me a blank map and I’d have a hard time correctly identifying just where in the world Romania is. Despite my admitted lack of knowledge on world history and geography this book drew me in and held my interest. A book that had me searching the internet for more information on the author, Romania and Nadia Comaneci.

Aura’s story of growing up in Communist Romania is a story of hope and the struggle for freedom. This captivating book details the difficulties encountered by those who legally immigrate to America. From trying to obtain a job to learning how to order a meal at McDonalds, Aura’s description of her life as an immigrant was eye opening. Through her pursuit of the American dream Aura loses herself and those that she loves but ultimately through her journey rediscovers her roots, her loves and herself.

Out of the Transylvania Night is the story of overcoming trials, achieving goals, following your heart, remaining true to yourself and finding real happiness. Aura Imbarus show us there is more to living the American Dream than owning a nice car.

Content: A little language in a couple scenes but otherwise a clean read.

Rating: 5 Stars to this very memorable book.
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Format: Paperback
Add me to the list of those puzzled by the five-star reviews. I'll try to refrain from denigrating the book too much, but suffice it to say that I don't recommend it.

The books starts out fairly promisingly, with some descriptions of Romanian life in the late 80s and the transitional period in the early 90s. But it soon devolves into a very self-centered story which I found completely egotistical, and wholly commonplace. The author did not do anything to convince me that her story was any different from the thousands of other post-communist emigres to America.

About half-way through this book I determined that it was not going to get any better, but I was determined to finish it anyway. Sure enough, it did not fail to disappoint in the end. The author must be delusional to think that her story is so unique that others would be interested in reading about her life. There is little in this book to inspire, and one can likely find better contemporary pieces to help describe life in Eastern Europe in the early 90s.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book should win the Nobel Prize for one of the best example's of triumph of the human spirit. I've lived in America all of my life so I am used to freedom. Aura didn't have that, but she broke free from the chains of Communism, moved here, rose to success and demonstrated how everyone can achieve freedom of spirit if they really want it. I read Gabriel Garcia Marquez's award winning book: ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDE. It won the Novel Prize for Literature, I believe, back around 1985? This book is equally well written but the difference is that Mocondo (?) a town in Marquez's book, is made up; it's not real. Everything in Out of the Transylvania Night comes across as very real because I'm sure that it is.
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