Am höchsten bewertete kritische Rezension
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Choices Not Easily Understood
am 6. Februar 2000
Only those who have survived the holocaust truly know the real horrors of this twentieth century hell on earth. No matter how much the rest of us learn about this living nightmare, we will never fully comprehend what went on because it will always be second hand. To make judgments about how Jewish people chose to survive seems so wrong. Yet, as I continued to read "The Nazi Officer's Wife," I could not keep from uttering some form of audible shock on certain choices Ms. Hahn made along the way. For example, it was impossible for me to comprehend her determination to stay with Pepi long after it was apparent that he would never emigrate with her or even commit to her and that his "love" for her was a distant second to the loyalty he felt for his mother. I clearly see the necessity of becoming a German's lover and then wife in order to survive, but I can not understand why Edith's pressed to have a child with Werner Vertter in the worst of times. From the moment of conception this baby's life was at risk. Uncertain of her future with a man who did not even know the real Edith Hahn, this writer relates how, after the war, her daughter was baptized. Already knowing then that so many Jewish lives had been lost throughout Europe, did another Jewish identity need to be erased? I wanted to cry when Edith ended her relationship with the orphan, Gretl. If Edith ever tried to keep her "little family" together, she did not relate that in her book. Finally, of course, after all the history and all the passing years, Edith could not stop being in touch with the man who was never there for her. Though I cannot help but be bothered by certain choices Edith Hahn made, I must quickly add that I admire a woman who lived her "lie" so well for so long that she became a survivor.