"The Last Jews in Berlin", by Leonard Gross

The Last Jews in Berlin - Leonard Gross
This is an amazing account and the real-life story of some Berlin area Jews who managed to stay alive in hiding till the end of the war after the S.S. lightning roundup of all remaining Jews in Operation Factory. Such Jews were known as “U’Boats”. This book is based on interviews of the survivors conducted in 1967 and 1978 and is a powerful and gripping portrait of life during WW11.

The author fills in the backgrounds of all these survivors and we follow their travels and observe them under varied situation. Each story is broken into many pieces and the narrative weaves a suspenseful mosaic of experiences. This dramatization is solid and reads like a thriller.

The day to day struggle to stay alive is a harrowing and poignant experience which capped the essence of fear, hunger and desperation to a tee. Being hunted by the Gestapo, the SS and the Jews called “catchers” and still manage to hold your sanity and stay alive all that time is short of a miracle. Thanks to the good heart and courage of some German citizens and members of the Swedish church of Berlin few cheated the gas chambers and lasted long enough to see the Russian invasion and their liberation.

This book is so well-written and captivating it is hard to put down. I do agree with those saying this book is a tribute to the survivors as well as to their protectors.

This is an amazing read I highly recommend.

My thanks to Netgalley and the publisher Open Road Integrated Media for the opportunity to read an advance copy of this book