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4.8 out of 5 stars
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4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 14 March 2000
This must be one of the most harrowing books I have ever read. Ms Lengyel is a true heroine and we must thank her for writing her story. There are lessons in this book for everyone - and please God may it never happen again.
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on 13 August 2016
Extremely difficult to read,not because of the author's inability to tell the story. Rather more her ability to put such horror into words which to most human beings could never comprehend. I commend her tenacity wisdom compassion and courage as well as her shear bloody steadfast belief in her fellow human beings. A moving true story which she herself lived survived and somehow managed to carry on in order to tell, no warn mankind of the dangers that are ever present Lest we forget.
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on 18 August 1999
what an an amazing book! one of the best anybody could read on the holocaust subject. it is about the wife of a doctor who is imprisoned in the death camp BIRKENAU. unlike auschwitz, this camp is a death camp not a work camp where the author lives under unbearable conditions and manages to survive while watching her fellow internees give up on life. a very moving TRUE story. do not leave this book sitting on the shelf. it's a real page turner and make sure to grab a tissue!
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on 22 February 1999
camp system. Instead of an epic length, statistic and detail filled account we are instead presented with one woman's ordeal, and the author does not fail to convey the full brutality of her treatment at the hands of the Nazis and their accomplices. While her recollections are vivid (this book was originally written in 1947) the author is able to convey events without focusing on the grotesque in excrutiating detail. This book is not for the faint of heart, but it is a rewarding account of a life in the camps. The book will stay with you long after you've read it.
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on 18 January 1999
Five Chimneys was the best book I've ever read on the subject of the Holocaust and believe me I've read 'em all. Olga Lengyel does a wonderful job of showing the real Auschwitz, not the Auschwitz that everyone else writes about. I have so much respect for this book and it's author because they are both amazing in evey way possible. rteccomend this book, but only if you wnat the real thing.
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on 9 August 2002
I was extremely touched by this fantastic, gripping and shocking story. Having read many accounts of life in concentration camps, this particular book captures it all in terrifyingly real and accurate detail. It stands as a testament to true survival and the indomitable spirit of those who were subjected to such persecution at the hands of the Nazi's.
A book that must be read, no matter what your age.
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on 10 August 2016
An excellent book about a terrible part of history. I have watched a lot of films and read a lot of books on the WW2 and I found out new information that showed how absolutely evil the Nazi period was. We must never forget that this happened and should never allow it to happen again. It worries me that the world seems to becoming more racist and people are doing nothing to combat this.
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on 8 January 2005
I have read several books on the Holocaust/Auschwitz but 'Five Chimneys' is certainly one of the best! From the first couple of pages you are completely taken into the story and it's the beginning of a journey that is so horrible and moving that it's hard to believe that someone could survive a single day at Auschwitz! Books like 'Five Chimney's are important documents to remind us all of what evil was done during World War II and we must never forget it!
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on 27 January 2012
I have read many books on this subject, but this is definately one of the best. It is obviously written by some-one whose first language was not English and who was not a professional novelist. These issues only added to the impact and power of this memoir. The fact that this woman physically survived such an experience was astonishing enough, but to go on to live into her 90's and live a full, productive life fills the reader with admiration. Not least by writing this book and bearing witness to the world of what happened in Auschwitz-Birkenau. I found myself wanting to stop reading her story as it was unrelentingly harrowing, but could not put it down as I wanted to know who had survived and how? Every cruelty and degredation perpetrated towards, and by, the victims had me imagining how I would feel if this happened to a member of my family or friends. Very thought provoking.

Not a book for the sensitive, but one I would highly recommend. It reminds the reader of the importance of not forgetting this terrible episode in history and that those who suffered and died (whether Jew or Gentile) where human beings and not just numbers.
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on 23 February 2014
I've read this book three times now, and will read it again several more as it takes multiple times for the harrowing account of what this remarkable woman and her fellow sufferers endured at the hands of the Nazis.

We must never, ever forget about this dark period in European history and the crimes committed against not only the Jews but any race or creed who didn't fit the 'master race' brief or ideal.
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