7 Must-read Books on Holocaust

Author: Sherry Helms

January 27, the coming Sunday, is the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. As proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly on 1 November 2005, this day is an international memorial day for the victims of the Holocaust, the genocide that resulted in the annihilation of 6 million Jews, 2 million Gypsies, 15,000 homosexual people and millions of others by the Nazi regime and its collaborators.

As per the war records, 27 January is the date in 1945 when the largest Nazi death camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, was liberated by Soviet troops.

So, on the coming Sunday, let’s remember the victims of holocaust through the work of literature. Here is a list of 7 must-read books on Holocaust that give you an account of that horrifying and sobering scenes of the Nazi Germany. Take a look:

The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank - This is an Autobiography of Anne Frank. Discovered in the attic in which she spent the last years of her life, Anne Frank’s remarkable diary has since become a world classic as a powerful reminder of the horrors of the holocaust in Nazis occupying Holland and an eloquent testament to the human spirit. In 1942, when Nazis overpowered the Holland, Anne Frank, a thirteen-year-old Jewish girl, and her family fled their home in Amsterdam and went into hiding with another family. In her diary Anne Frank recorded vivid impressions of her experiences she had during this period.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak - Set during World War II in Germany, this groundbreaking novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist – books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

Night by Elie Wiesel - This is a terrifying account of the Nazi death camp horror that turns a young Jewish boy into an agonized witness to the death of his family…the death of his innocence…and the death of his God. Penetrating and powerful, as personal as The Diary Of Anne Frank, Night awakens the shocking memory of evil at its absolute and carries with it the unforgettable message that this horror must never be allowed to happen again.

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas   by John BoyneThis is a story of Bruno, a school boy, who with his family moves to a new house that is far, far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. Just a tall fence running alongside stretches as far as the eye can see. But Bruno longs to be an explorer and decides that there must be more to this desolate new place than meets the eye. While exploring his new environment, he meets another boy wearing striped pajamas, whose life and circumstances are very different to his own, and their meeting results in a friendship that has devastating consequences.

Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally - This famous book recreates the true story of Oskar Schindler, the Czech-born southern German industrialist who risked his life to save over 1,100 of his Jewish factory workers from the death camps in Nazi-occupied Poland. Based on the recollections of the Schindlerjuden (Schindler’s Jews), Schindler himself, and other witnesses, this documentary novel recounts the lives of the flamboyant profiteer and womanizer Schindler; Schindler’s long-suffering wife, Emilie; the brutal SS (Nazi secret service) commandant Amon Goeth; Schindler’s quietly courageous factory manager, Itzhak Stern; and dozens of other Jews who underwent the horrors of the Nazi machinery.

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry - Ten-year-old Annemarie Johansen and her best friend Ellen Rosen often think of life before the war. It’s now 1943 and their life in Copenhagen is filled with school, food shortages, and the Nazi soldiers marching through town. When the Jews of Denmark are “relocated,” Ellen moves in with the Johansens and pretends to be one of the family. Soon Annemarie is asked to go on a dangerous mission to save Ellen’s life.

Auschwitz: A Doctor’s Eyewitness Account by Miklos Nyiszli - “The best brief account of the Auschwitz experience available.”—The New York Review of Books.

When the Nazis invaded Hungary in 1944, they sent virtually the entire Jewish population to Auschwitz in a prison camp. A Jew, a medical doctor, and a prisoner, Dr. Miklos Nyiszli was spared from death for a grimmer fate to perform scientific research on his fellow inmates under the supervision of the infamous Dr. Josef Mengele popularly regarded as the “Angel of Death”. Miraculously, he survived to archive his petrifying experiences under Nazis and came up with this book.

Well, this is our selection of best books on holocaust. But, if you have in your mind some other title(s) as the best account of horrendous holocaust, you’re most welcome to mention the same in the comment section.

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