The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
A few years back I went through a phase of being completely obsessed with Holocaust literature. I think it stemmed from being utterly shocked at the memories I was reading, when something is so alien, one can’t help but be fascinated by it.
I was scrolling Amazon and saw this book and immediately bought it. I then began reading it a few days later. After a few pages, I bemoaned the book. I had a conversation with someone at work about how I simply wasn’t getting into it, I thought the writing style was a bit simple. That night I googled the book and learnt that it is in fact a true story and that Heather Morris spent years listening to Lale, researching and putting everything into place. Suddenly, I saw the book in a whole new light, one of amateurish honesty. (In hindsight, I should have realised that it was a true story, who has the capacity to make this up?!)
Is it sad to say that the experiences recounted within this story are not the worst I have read? It is tragic to think that a friend at work mentioned how appalled and horrified she was at the experiences these poor souls endured and yet, within my obsession a few years back, I had read far worse.
But, it did allow me to see the love story within this book as the true shining beacon. At the end I cried, I cried for the suffering Lale and Gita endured but most of all I cried for the love they had for each other and the unlikeliness of them finding each other in the camp, out of the camp and then spending the rest of their lives together. From that aspect, it was beautiful.