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The Last Jews in Berlin [Paperback]

Leonard Gro
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: 9.54 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

28 July 1999
In February 1943 four thousand Jews went underground in Berlin. By the end of the war all but a few hundred of them had died in bombing raids or, more commonly, in death camps. This is the poignant story of some of those women and men-a young mother, a scholar and his countess lover, a black-market jeweler, a fashion designer, a Zionist, an opera-loving merchant, a teen-age orphan-who resourcefully, boldly, defiantly, luckily, survived. In hiding or in masquerade, by their wits and sometiems with the aid of conscience-stricken German citizens, they survived. They survived the constant threat of discovery by the Nazi authorities or by the sinister handful of turncoat Jewish "catchers" who would send them to the gas chambers. They survived hunger and treachery and disease. They survived to tell this tale.

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The Last Jews in Berlin + Refuge in Hell: How Berlin's Jewish Hospital Outlasted the Nazis
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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Avalon Publishing Group (28 July 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786706872
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786706877
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 14 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 756,338 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This books vividly tells the tale of few of the Jewish survivors living in Berlin during the 2nd world war. After reading the book I was left with a feeling of amazement at the bravery and strong will to survive that makes mankind fight for the lives during the most horrible of times.
The book also reminded me about the horrible things men can do to each other.
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5.0 out of 5 stars My heart is in my mouth as I read this book 14 May 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
After watching 'Generation War: Our Mothers and Fathers' on TV recently, I was intrigued to know how many Jews were in Berlin during WW2. The fear and uncertainty of these people's lives jumps off every page. I could not stop reading this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great fast service 28 Oct 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
It is what it is. Great!!! I've been looking for this book for years. So easy to use this site.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books I have read this year 18 Jun 2005
By Inger Watts - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I bought this book a short time ago, and I started to read it the day I found it in my post box. It is a very captivating book about how 18 Jews survived in the very heart of Nazi Germany during World War. Some managed to keep their families somewhat intact, while others were the only survivor among their entire family.

They survived in different ways, but all had at least one person helping them. One of the things I liked the most with this book; was the very fact that it tells the stories of brave and good Germans who risked their lives in order to help fellow citizens. Despite the fact that they had had to live with Hitler's propaganda and terror for more than a decade, they still aimed to do their best. Even though many survivors and rescuers often were lucky, I was amazed about how clever they were and how they managed to stay alive.

On the front cover of the book Los Angeles Times is quoted to have written: "[Reads] like an Alfred Hitchcock thriller", and I agree with them. The book was very well written, and it was very hard to put it down. I found myself reading until I went to sleep, and next morning I managed to read another chapter before I went to work. I read the book in no time, and I was only sorry I had finished it. I wanted to keep on reading.

The big difference between this book and a Hitchcock thriller is of course that: "The Last Jews in Berlin" is not fiction.

The only thing that I missed was photos of the people I read about. Still, the book is so good I find it really deserves five stars
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A riveting account of surviving the Holocaust 27 Nov 1999
By Carmen Carter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Gross is an exemplary writer, letting this story unfold through a spare, unembroidered narration of the harrowing events that affected the lives of a half-dozen different Jews. In this case, reality doesn't need any authorial florishes to create suspense and terror, and Gross's restraint as a writer highlights his subjects and lets them tell their stories in a very personal way. More than just a war history, this is an examination of the human spirit under seige.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ordinary Heroes 16 Sep 2000
By Howard Horwitz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Very worthwhile book. It was fascinating because it dealt with ordinary people in probably the most extraordinary circumstances. These multiple tales of survival explore what it took for persons who could easily be our friends, our neighbors, our familiy, to heroically survive in the midst of their hometown enemies while undergoing the privations of war. Substantively an excellent book.
I would caution you, however, that the tales are presented in a disjointed fashion, and I would recommend taking notes at the beginning on who's who in order to keep up with the players.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting. 14 Mar 2006
By Anais Nin - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Leonard Gross's well-researched and well-documented book about a few of the Jewish 'U-Boats' who survived in hiding in Hitler's 'Juden-Frei' Berlin is truly magnificent.

It reads like a thriller but every bit of it is true. I found it informative, well-written and very accessable, unlike similar works, (Such as 'Stella' by Peter Wyden) which, while also well-reseached and well-informed, were dry and hard to follow.

Less than 1% of the Jews that lived in Berlin before Hitler came into power were there after the fall of Berlin (some having escaped, most having been banished to the death camps), and the fact that Gross was able to get several of these survivor's stories is just incredible.

The characters were truly alive and I acutely felt every joy, every danger, every near capture and had to stop reading several times because it was all too real and terrifying, especially the horrifying concept that some turncoat Jews, thier own people, were hunting for them.

This is an unbelievably compelling piece of work that deserves to be read by everyone and I cannot recommend it strongly enough.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Multiple, varied accounts of the Holocaust 6 Nov 2001
By madsenmel - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is one of my favorite books, not only because of the wonderful narrative, compelling characters, and inspiring stories, but because of the variety of circumstances these Jews found themselves in. Some went into hiding, some passed themselves off as Gentiles, some collaborated with the resistance, and all managed to survive. Some had no help and were separated from loved ones, some managed to keep their families somewhat intact. Their struggles, defeats, and victories are inspiring and a testament to the nature of the human spirit.
A small note: the stories are not told sequentially, and it may be easier the first time to skip chapters and read each person's tale completely, otherwise it becomes a tad overwhelming to keep track of so many characters.
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