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In This Remarkably Moving Memoir Ariana Neumann Dives Into The Secrets Of Her Father S Past Years Spent Hiding In Plain Sight In War Torn Berlin, The Annihilation Of Dozens Of Family Members In The Holocaust, And The Courageous Choice To Build AnewIn , The First Neumann Family Member Was Taken By The Nazis, Arrested In German Occupied Czechoslovakia For Bathing In A Stretch Of River Forbidden To Jews He Was Transported To Auschwitz Eighteen Days Later His Prisoner Number Was Entered Into The Morgue Book Of Thirty Four Neumann Family Members, Twenty Five Were Murdered By The Nazis One Of The Survivors Was Hans Neumann, Who, To Escape The German Death Net, Traveled To Berlin And Hid In Plain Sight Under The Gestapo S Eyes What Hans Experienced Was So Unspeakable That, When He Built An Industrial Empire In Venezuela, He Couldn T Bring Himself To Talk About It All His Daughter Ariana Knew Was That Something Terrible Had Happened When Hans Died, He Left Ariana A Small Box Filled With Letters, Diary Entries, And Other Memorabilia Ten Years Later Ariana Finally Summoned The Courage To Have The Letters Translated, And She Began Reading What She Discovered Launched Her On A Worldwide Search That Would Deliver Indelible Portraits Of A Family Loving, Finding Meaning, And Trying To Survive Amid The Worst That Can Be Imagined When Time Stopped Is An Unputdownable Detective Story And An Epic Family Memoir, Spanning Nearly Ninety Years And Crossing Oceans Neumann Brings Each Relative To Vivid Life In Uncovering Her Father S Story After All These Years, She Discovers Nuance And Depth To Her Own History And Liberates Poignant And Thought Provoking Truths About The Threads Of Humanity That Connect Us All Received as an ARC from the publisher Started 10 13 19 Finished 10 17 19 Excellent memoir of a young Venezuelan woman s search for her father s history of living through WWII in his homeland of Czechoslovakia and through terrors in Germany Starting with a box of documents, letters and photos, she begins her research into her family s past and discovers the loss and gain of family members She learns the details of dozens of her relatives, most she didn t know existed Perseverance kept many of these people alive so that today their descendants live all over the world. Today, January 27th is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, marking the day 75 years ago when Auschwitz Birkenau was liberated I say this every time I read a book on the Holocaust it is imperative that we think about and remember those who perished at the hands of such absolutely evil people and also remember those who survived, but not only today Their stories are of the utmost importance and we have to keep listening to and reading them and hearing them because we can t let this happen again There are so few survivors left, so others will have to carry the torch to tell and tell, again and again Ariana Neumann writes so eloquently of her father s past, a hidden past too painful for him to relive, to talk about, but eventually revealed She writes of her family, many of whom perished at the hands of the Nazis and of those who survived She reminisces about how as a little girl growing up in Venezuela, she finds a photograph of her father in a box, an identity card with his picture and a stamp of Hitler While this was the beginning of her awareness that her father had kept his past from her, it wasn t until many years later when at his death, he leaves her a box of of letters and photos, that she realized that there was so much to know There was everything to know about her father and his family who suffered at the hand of the Nazis in their homeland in Czechoslovakia before he came to Venezuela It was several years later that she was able to bring herself to have the letters translated and years before she could bring herself to read them the memoir he had begun writing She generously shares them with us She begins her journey to that past, reaching out to cousins and family friends, piecing together what they knew, tracing the lives of her grandparents in Terezin , piecing together her father s story Neumann travels to the places where her father did, looking for remnants of her grandparents lives, for the man who helped save her father It s gut wrenching as all Holocaust stories are, but it s filled with love for her father, filled with the love within the family she never knew In her heartfelt dedication, Ariana Neumann says This book is dedicated to the memory of those who could not tell their stories We must keep reading the stories that others tell of them This is one of those books I received an advanced copy of this book from Scribner through NetGalley and Edelweiss. This book is dedicated to the memory of those who could not tell their stories THANK YOU, TAMMY for making sure I didn t miss this book Adriana Neumann grew up in Venezuela This book is a tribute to her father, Hans Neumann Part literary family memoir part mystery detective tale..a search for answers and the truth a daughters profound love for her father What Hans experienced during the war was horrendous and monstrous.He could never speak about it It was only after Hans died, that he left a box of letters diary entries, photos and beautiful memorabilia, photos of an old watch gave me chills along with other wonderful photos , for Adriana.which sent Adriana on a worldwide search to uncover her father s storyspanning nearly ninety years Hans was a brilliant man highly respected in his community He built an industrial empire in Venezuela.He had a passion for art Hans compulsively collected watches, books, clocks, medieval objects, paintings, and sculptures.and had an obsession with timekeeping and punctuality He owned 297 pocket watches I found Hans to be a fascinating man handsome loyal to his family driven smart as a whip And this was even before we learn about his wonderful daughter, Ariana, who uncovers the family secrets from the past In Hans later years before his death, he suffered a massive stroke, which left him wheelchair bound It was really inspiring to learn how he kept active His physical limitations didn t stop himfrom his exercise regime He was up early swimming laps aided with a float, and traipsed up and down the corridor with a walking frame three times a day HANS LIVED FULLY after the war up to the day he died but he didn t burden his family one iota about the horrors he endured during the Holocaust After suffering a series of strokes that left his legs paralyzed completelyhe eventually succumbed to his death Ariana s father was cremated September 11, 2001 Shortly after Hans died, Ariana gave birth to her first child A boy She and her husband were living in London at the time of her father s death Adriana shared about her childhood growing up in Caracas, Venezuela in the 1970 s, and 80 s Her neighborhood in Venezuela sounded like an oasis with a wonderful garden that had dozens of different palms, mangos, guava, acacia, and eucalyptus treesand bushes covered with orchards Adriana said The country that I grew up in was filled with promise There were serious problems social disparity, corruption, and poverty but there was also a sense that such issues were being addressed Social and educational programs were being implemented government housing, schools, and hospitals were being built.Venezuela in the 1970s and 80s had a stable democracy, a rising literacy rate, and a flourishing art scene.Migrants where are attracted by the quality of life and the relative safety, climate, and business opportunities Hans and his older brother, Lotar, migrated to Venezuela because their country had been broken by war The brothers started a paint factory together that proved to be prosperous It was fun to read a little bit about the type of girl Adriana was as a child She wanted to solve mysteries She knew very young she wanted to be a detective or better yet a spy.As a child she started a spy club with her cousins.Little did Adriana know at the time that she would carry her detective talents into her adult life associated with her own father The storytelling page after page was engaging moving and intimate which became grippingly riveting as Adriana uncovered information going through his papers, notes, letters, and all those things her father quietly saved his collections after his death So much she didn t know about his past While growing up in Ariana s family, they were allowed to freely discuss politics, religion, sex, drugs, her parents marriage, divorce any topic except her father s past Hans past was a taboo topic It was clear that for Hans to talk about his parents, or his life growing up in Czechoslovakia, was too painful for him Growing up, all Ariana knew about her grandparents was that they Czech.who never made it to Venezuela and had owned a dull gold watch I don t want to spoil the next 90% of this book.Trust me READ s an AMAZING journey.Ariana s father did leave her clues He even left a puzzle for her in his box If that wasn t symbolic, I don t know what is My father left the world of which he seldom spoke as a riddle for me to unlock, the answers perhaps being the key to his complex and hermetic personality Once Ariana begins her inquiries, and locating people, attempting to assemble a family tree.I thought of the Russian Nesting doll another, another, another clue to discover Ariana discovers than she ever expected.I was sooo engrossed in this story I simply did not know what Ariana was going to uncover Fascinating story Traumatized people often construct defense mechanisms strong enough to deter those closest to them Interspersed amid the horrors were wisps of beauty and love. Adriana Neumann has written the amazing history of her father Hans Neumann and what his family endured during WWll Ariana grew up in Venezuela daughter of Hans, a wealthy industrialist, and didn t even know about her fathers history When her father died, she was left a box with all sorts of documents and a picture I.D of her father, that had a little picture of Hitler on it below his From here, she did all the investigating to find out her fathers history unbelievable Hans and his family were Jews living in Czechoslovakia, they had their own paint company, a country home, were doing well until the Nazi s took over.This is so different from other stories as we see the lengths the people had to go through to keep out of sight of the Nazi s what a story Thank you to my Goodreads friend Tammy for bringing this book to my attention Thank you to Scribner through Netgalley for this ARC Here is a little video by Arianahttps IKdmasdnpvE