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on 2 January 2011
Icek Kuperberg was a young Polish Jew with a promising future when Hitler invaded Poland, thereby changing the course of his life irrevocably. Cast into a world of concentration camps and slave labour, Icek used his engineering skills to stay as useful as possible in order to avoid being exterminated and also in an attempt to stave off starvation by earning an extra crust of bread or bowl of watery turnip soup.

This short testimony is Icek's account of his incarceration at the behest of the Reich. Icek was imprisoned for most of the war and would spend time in ten different camps including the notorious `Auschwitz'.

Extremely well written, raw and honest; this is a brutal, but necessary read. Recommended to those who study the Holocaust and its victims, this is a very short read and one which can be completed in a single sitting.

Icek was a man of ingenuity and resourcefulness, his account is an invaluable social document and one which testifies to the brutality and pointlessness of these terrible crimes.
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on 25 February 2011
A rather short book but Mr Kuperburg writes in a simplistic but thought provoking style. He is an extremely inspiring man who shows the true strength of human spirit in terrible circumstances.
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on 10 August 2011
This simply told tale is in many ways a minor masterpiece of Holocaust Literature. The author has none of the skill of a Primo Levi or Eli Wiesel but his testimony is no less important or powerful. The simplicity and rawness of his prose adds to the power of the narrative. Its a straightforward story and a familiar one. We read of his brutal separation from his parents and other family members; of the selection process where because of his skill he was sent to Labour rather then Death camps; of the daily humiliation and mistreatment and the almost deadpan descriptions of horrendous and meaningless violence and killings. Like many who survived he was skilled and resourceful and through his own ingenuity was able to help others survive. He even gained the respect of one camp commandant at Annaberg and his German overseers, but he was under no delusion. It was the respect a useful animal or slave would receive in order for the camp authorities to achieve their goals and keep their factories and workshops in working order. In meantime he wasn't spared ritual beatings from camp guards and he inexplicable actions of the Jews who tried to protect themselves by becoming overseers ( Kapos). He spares no one and hides nothing in his story nor should he. Even though familiar there is always something new to be found; a unique perspective relevant to each author, which symbolises the humanity which the Nazis sought to destroy.

As we learn again and again this is the most significant form of resistance.
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on 15 April 2011
Such is the power of the mass media in the 21st century, that there is a danger that one can almost become immune to constant portrayals of man's inhumanity to man. I suppose it is a defence mechanism to protect us from unimaginable horrors. The holocaust was one of the very worst occasions when one nation inflicted sustained barbarity on others and the many personal accounts of it which are available are pressing reminders, if ever we should forget what depths humankind is capable of sinking to.

This relatively short book is essential reading - as a necessary reminder of the horrors inflicted at that dark dark point in man's history. And a reminder that such horrors can and do happen again. What is so remarkable about the book is the matter-of-fact understated way that one man can relate repeated and unrelenting sufferings inflicted upon him, his family and friends, yet without apparent rancour or undue anger. And at the end of everything - he survives, and makes his way in the world.

It's a tale of victory, despite everything, and certainly puts our own relatively minor hardships into perspective.
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on 4 February 2012
I loved reading every page of this book and although it was extremely horrifying to read how people were treated in the concentration camps it was really nice to know that the few survivors went on to live brilliant lives to the full. Just like Icek Kuperberg who is now living in Florida and has a family. Brilliant.
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on 26 March 2011
I read this book with horror, that the things man can do to another man is quite shocking..This story of this mans ingenuity to survive the most awful situations, the fact that he had attained skills was his life saver I'm guessing! It reduced me to tears in some parts and thus humbled me.
This period of time should never be forgotten EVER!
I followed him on his journey and at the end of the book I felt as exhausted emotionally as he must have felt many times seeing the horror that he had.

A truly amazing story. Bless him, and all those that perished!
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on 20 January 2012
We should never forget what happened!! This book made me laugh and cry a must read!!
Someone had said in the reviews it was badly written (punctuation wise) if it was and quite frankly l wouldn't care, it was written by an extrodinary man who had escaped death l think it was 6 times!!! It was lovely to see at the end of the book a picture of him. Icek l salute you!!!!!
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on 8 February 2015
This is a very concise memoir. The brutality, deprivation and barbaric cruelty that Icek Kuperberg witnessed and suffered himself hits you like a sledgehammer. How anyone survived the Holocaust is a miracle. May the survivors stories forever be told, because we must never, ever forget.
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on 2 July 2014
I got this some months ago and read it almost immediately. It was very moving, specially as it is written in such a matter-of-fact way and calm style, although describing the vilest of personal memories. The sheer horror of what was happening around him and to him was stark. A short memoir, but I'm glad I have read it, even although the subject-matter is so horrific.
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on 23 June 2014
To read what this person suffered during the Holocaust was truly heartbreaking. How one human being could treat another like this was unbelievable. His survival was a true testament to the strength of a human being when they are tested to the extreme. Amazing man who told the truth about the Holocaust for all of us to learn about and do our best to never let it happen again. Thank you Icek Kuperberg
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