cover image Somewhere There Is Still a Sun: A Memoir of the Holocaust

Somewhere There Is Still a Sun: A Memoir of the Holocaust

Michael Gruenbaum, with Todd Hasak-Lowy. S&S/Aladdin, $17.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-4424-8486-3

Written in first-person present-tense narration, this riveting memoir traces the increasingly appalling events that took place from 1939–1945 in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia, as seen through the eyes of Gruenbaum. As the book opens, 10-year-old Misha protests his growing awareness of injustice: “Every day is a new, stupid rule and worse food and no soccer.” Watching the German army enter Prague, he feels more curiosity than dread until he sees a couple jump to their death holding hands. Miseries ensue: the ghetto, yellow stars, his father’s murder, increasing danger, hunger, and humiliation—all leading to the family’s arrival in the Terezin concentration camp. There, Misha joins a group of 40 boys who live, work, and play under the stern but loving care of Franta, a young man who calls them the “Nesharim,” and demands high moral character: “We will let nothing separate us from our humanity.” The ingenuity, love, and defiant courage displayed by Misha, his parents, Franta, and others counteract incessant degradation and terror, creating an inspiring testament to human resilience. Ages 10–14. Agent: (for Gruenbaum) Amy Berkower, Writers House; (for Hasak-Lowy) Daniel Lazar, Writers House. (Aug.)