Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Anca in Auschwitz

Tuesday I was wondering what I was going to blog about. I thought about seeing if I couldn’t outline how I was going about my edit process for Watching by Miriam Joy. Then I thought about posting up some responses to Beautiful People. But, after I got home and had the kids in bed there was only one thing I wanted to do...

Finish reading Anca’s Story by Saffina Desforges (Amazon US). And now, I’m going to relay it to you as I fight back the tears.

The cover, and of course my post title gives away the fact that this is a Holocaust story. The author’s don’t hide that fact from, nor the fact that it’s about three children who smuggle themselves into Auschwitz, that concentration camp that anyone who has paid attention to history class should know the name of. And from my recollection it was touted as the worst of all of them.

The story doesn’t start there of course, but rather in mundane classroom of the modern age, supped up with high tech gadgets, and a frail old lady asked to come in a relate her tale to slumped teens who probably all think Vampires should sparkle *scoff*. That is until Anca asks them if they have lost a parent and then tells them that she lost hers at the age of 12. Her father was executed in front of her and her mother... well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out.

Make sure you bring tissues. I suspect if I hadn’t taken three separate occasions to read the whole book I’d have been bawling by the end.

The Holocaust isn’t a pretty time in our history. But it is something that must be remembered. I’ve been horrified and fascinated by it since my Fourth Grade teacher read Devil’s Arithmatic by Jane Yolen. I followed that up by reading, and then watching, The Diary of Anne Frank in middle school.  In high school two busloads of kids, including me and my friend, the Rabbi’s daughter, were shipped to the theater to view Schindler’s List.

Now I add Anca’s Story (Amazon UK) to my list. I am glad I did and I hope they get a movie deal with a director who knows what they are doing. That way those who won’t read can be exposed to the tale. A tale I feel worth every tear I cried, and all the ones I didn’t.

:} Cathryn Leigh


  1. Cathryn, thank you so much for taking the time to blog about Anca's Story, Mark and I are THRILLED that it is out there for all to read and weep at. If only it was fiction... Saffi x

    1. It was such a moving story, how could I not share it? :} I know my blog audience is small, but every journey begins with a single step. May this be but one of many steps Anca's Story takes. :}

  2. I really want to read it now! Unfortunately I haven't got enough money in my bank account to buy it (yes, I'm really THAT skint, it sucks greatly). Sigh. I'll just have to wait until I have some.

    1. Really? Hm.. When's your birthday?

      Or I could loan it to you, but I've got no qualms buying you a copy. :}

  3. Snurf snurf, I can hardly bear to read Holocaust stories for exactly that reason - I've read too much and studied it too much, and I know I can't take it well.

    Schindler's List is a proper tear-jerker too - cried all the way through it when we watched it in RS last year.

    I wonder how people can find the capacity in themselves to be so vile...

    1. I suspect you'd need a truck load of tissues for Anca's Stroy if you did attempt to read it, considering your reaction to Schindler's List.

      I think what gets me is there are people out there who will claim it never happened... That's almost more unbelievable to me than people being vile. Mindboggling...