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Remembering Judith - A true story of shattered childhoods
 
 

Remembering Judith - A true story of shattered childhoods [Kindle Edition]

Ruth Joseph
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (166 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
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Product Description

Review

This hauntingly moving tale of a daughter's devotion to her anorexic mother tugs at the heartstrings and plays on the mind for long after you've finished it. PRIMA MAGAZINE

Product Description

This hauntingly moving tale of a daughter's devotion to her anorexic mother tugs at the heartstrings and plays on the mind for long after you've finished it. - Prima Magazine

A true story of shattered childhoods...

Following her escape from Nazi Germany and the loss of her family Judith searches for unconditional love and acceptance. In a bleak boarding house she meets her future husband – another Jewish refugee who cares for her when she is ill.Tragically she associates illness with love and a pattern is set. Judith’s behaviour eventually spiral into anorexia – a disease little known or understood in 1950’s Britain.

While she starves herself, Judith forces Ruth, her daughter, to eat. She makes elaborate meals and watches her consume them. She gives her a pint of custard before bed each night. As the disease progresses roles are reversed. Ruth must care for her mother and loses any hope of a normal childhood. The generation gap is tragically bridged by loss and extreme self-loathing, in this moving true story of a family’s fight to survive.

Ruth Joseph lives in Cardiff, Wales where she is part of the strong Jewish community. She has a strong, evovative voice which speaks directly to the reader about guilt, love and food. Her work has perviously been published by Honno, Parthian and Loki.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 570 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Accent Press (21 July 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008NWZLQA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (166 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #102,044 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, on a number of levels. 30 Dec. 2011
Format:Paperback
The book provides a (well written) account of a sad childhood, and young adulthood, with a mother whose illness is still not well understood. It must have been a greatly cathartic act for Ruth Joseph to write about such difficult times. It is further set against the background of escaping the holocaust.

The book for me also works on a different, and entirely personal level as I live in the house where much of the account is based (for those who read the book, "The Prison"). We moved here to escape some sad history and have always found it a happy home - it is difficult to imagine Ruth, and Ruth's family, having such a different experience of the bricks and mortar to that we have enjoyed. It was also amusing as the house, until we started major works of renovation in the autumn of 2011, was much as described in the book (including some graffiti by the author on the inside garage wall!) as built in 1955, including the front door as shown on the cover picture.

We were not aware of the book when it was first published and chanced upon it by accident - the post mistress saw the return address on a package we were sending and informed us about the book.

A recommended read even if you don't have the personal perspective I have!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, honest and tragic 13 Aug. 2012
By Alice
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Ruth has spent almost her whole life with a mother who suffers from anorexia and a farther who distances himself both physically and emotionally. This is such a sad story that gives so much insight into what life was like living with an anorexic through the 1950s 60's and 70's. Ruth is an amazingly strong woman who has dealt with so much. This book lays all bear and I think Ruth should be commended not just for her skill at writing and having the strength to share it, but also for having dealt with so much so well.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Childhood memories of a sick mother 30 Sept. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Easy read of a sad image of a girl growing up with an anorexic/bulimic mother when knowledge of such illnesses were not talked about or understood. How her childhood was not like other girls as her father left her from a young age to cope with her mother while he worked away and returned home like nothing was wrong with gifts for his sick wife. The house was run strictly with religious rules being followed out of duty to their old life and when she finally meets the love she's needed, the battle with her father to be allowed to marry.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and emotional book 2 Sept. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Picked this up when it was free as it sounded interesting. Instead of just being interesting, I found it incredibly powerful, painful, poignant, searingly honest and resonated with me for all sorts of reasons.

Ruth is the child of two Holocaust survivors who met in London during the war. She grew up in Cardiff and gradually became the carer of her mother who suffered with what would be instantly recognised today as Anorexia Nervosa. Her father was also just as controlling but in a different way.

The book also deals with not only the effect that her mother's disease had on her when she was caring for her but also the effect it had on her outlook regarding food and how she viewed her own approach to food and to life. She also gives an insight into the role the Jewish religion has had on her life.

Written exceptionally well, she tells her story strongly - never shrinking from the truth about the emotions she felt and the guilt that she still carries to this day, despite her recognising that is the long lingering after effect of a less than ideal childhood. This is one of the reasons that the story resonated with me, I know that there are deep seated food issues in my life, again largely from issues passed to me from parents (one in particular), it will be a life long struggle of mine to separate myself from these issues - a similar journey, not the same, to Ruth Joseph. Very, very thought provoking!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating 29 Aug. 2012
By Sucina
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is one of the most extraordinary biographical books that I have read, it is written in a very down to earth way even when relating some quite extraordinary events and circumstances - well worth reading if you like actually quite tragic accounts of other peoples existences.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic 28 July 2006
Format:Paperback
This is a beautifully written book. A masterpiece.

This is a very sad and disturbing book to read but I admire Ruth for her honesty and the way in which she is able to convey the depth of her feelings to the reader.

Well done for achieving so much in your life Ruth - YOU DESERVE ALL THE RECOGNITION this book will bring you.

BUY THIS!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remembering Judith 18 Sept. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I loved this book, from start to finnish i couldn't put it down. It was sometimes very sad but overall the life of the characters involved was fascinating, even more so as this is a true story! A fab read that i would recommend.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable Story. 18 Sept. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you think this is just another book about a dysfunctional childhood then think again. It's actually a well written tragedy which moved me deeply. A young girl's struggle to cope with a mentally ill and complex mother and the then little understood illness of anorexia. Ruth shows a remarkable lack of self-pity for a childhood lost to her mother and the dynamics of her parent's relationship as well as wisdom beyond her years. She conveys the tragedy of a lost child from her adult perspective with remarkable sensitivity and insight.
Well worth reading. An excellent book.
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