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Monday, April 12, 2010

The Secret Holocaust Diaries by Nonna Bannister

My Mom's Review

This is the kind of book I just couldn't put down, and I ended up reading some of it to my husband. I was amazed at the life of this little girl-turned-young-woman because the horrors of World War II were so devastating to her life. I ended up wishing that she had been more prolific in her writings, finding that I wanted to know more about what she went through. However, I liked the way the editors interspersed their explanations with her diary entries. I did feel at times that the editors (compilers) were a little repetitious in the notes they made. But I was impressed to learn how others besides the Jews were treated by the Nazis.

Nonna's love and care toward the Jews was very evident and must have been something she was taught as a child. I was really moved emotionally by Nonna's courage and daring while being shoved into a pit of dead bodies, experiencing her ruptured appendix, suffering rheumatic fever, and losing her dear Mama. Her courage was evident during the rest of her life as she hid the truth of her experiences from her husband and family. I believe that she found this concealment to be not only a way of saving herself from such bad memories but also to shield her family from having to think about the horrors she went through as such a young person. The strong family life she had as a  youngster must have played a part in her desire to give her family the protection from her past that she did.

I was very impressed by the strength she had for forgiveness and by her lack of bitterness toward her enemies of the past. I do wish that the book had included much more of her past. But I do realize that to record what she did was an amazing thing for one so young in the midst of such misery.


It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Tyndale House Publishers (March 4, 2010)
***Special thanks to Vicky Lynch of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. for sending me a review copy.***


Nonna Bannister was a young girl when World War II broke into her happy life. She went from an idyllic early-twentieth-century Russian childhood, full of love and comforts, to the life of a prisoner working in labor camps—though she was not a Jew—eventually bereft of her entire family. But she survived the war armed with the faith in God her grandmother taught her and a readiness to start a new life. She immigrated to America, married, and started a family, keeping her past secret from everyone. Though she had carried from Germany the scraps of a diary and various photographs and other memorabilia, she kept it all hidden and would only take it out, years later, to translate and expand her writings. After decades of marriage, Nonna finally shared her secret with her husband . . . and now he is sharing it with the world. Nonna died on August 15, 2004.

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers (March 4, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1414325479
ISBN-13: 978-1414325477


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