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These books have provided me with an extraordinary taste of a world that no longer exists. I am glad to have had that taste. My life is the better for it. I won't pretend that this is an easy listen. It describes a world that I've never known and I hope to never know outside of listening to Primo Levi's experiences. What rises from those experiences is a strong sense of how, despite the difficulties of existing, humans can both persist and retain a sense of dignity & purpose. Yes, he describes the brutality of the lager, but he does not lose his focus on the responses of both himself and those around him.
In The Truce, Levi goes on to describe the aftermath of his internment at Birkenau and his journey back to Italy. This is an odyssey of sorts, crossing Europe, and has some humour, as well.
Henry Goodman does an excellent job of narrating what might have been a banal and unrelieved story of true horror. Instead he finds the nuances to help differentiate in the listener's mind Levi's carefully written prose.
You do not need to be Jewish, anymore than you need to be a human being, to be interested in this book. It shows how those in power can seek to belittle the lives of those different to themselves. Also how despite the vile strictures of the powerful, those oppressed retain more of their humanity than their oppressors. Listen to this and find your own humanity.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
This is a brilliant heart rending account of what a man had to go through on a daily basic to survive a concentration camp and having done so, the challenges that he faced to get home. We cannot imagine the terrible ordeal that inmates had to endure but this book brings home the struggle where the vast majority did not make it. I have listened to this book three times - it makes me humble and realize that my day to day tribulations are nothing compared to what these heroes went through.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful