Foreword by Mordecai Paldiel - There are few books of Holocaust testimony that include pictures of families who lived through those times. This book is valuable as it contains family photographs...memorabilia, letters, postcards, family trees, and Nazi signage gives a comprehensive look at what Jewish families in Europe went through during the Nazi era and beyond. A useful resource for the education of today's youth, this book is recommended for ages 12 to 16.
Today Robert Max, an American WWII veteran, spoke about his capture and incarceration in Nazi labor camps. To say that this vibrant man of 94 years is an inspirational speaker would be a gross understatement. He relates that what kept him alive was the Jewish faith instilled in him by his mother (and the dreams of eating her home cooking once again). His book, The Long March Home will be available in February 2018.
My Sister's Eyes
Joan Arnay Halperin
PO Box 212, Hillsdale, NJ 07642
9780692844892, $19.95, PB, 94pp, Sousa Mendes Foundation or www.amazon.com
"My Sister's Eyes: A Family Chronicle of Rescue and Loss During World War II" by Joan Arnay Halperin tells the story of the Polish-Jewish Krakowiak family beginning with their prosperous pre-war life in Poland and Belgium, then suffering the Nazi onslaught and their perilous flight to freedom.
Of special note is the reporting of the moral heroism of the Portuguese Consul in Bordeaux and then the family's ultimate escape from the holocaust inferno of war and their journey to America.
Profusely illustrated and specifically written for young readers, "My Sister's Eyes" is an impressive testament to the human spirit and with its underlying message of 'Never Forget. Unique, exceptional, informative, emotionally moving, "My Sister's Eyes"' is very highly recommended for family, school and community library Holocaust Studies collections for children.
KIND WORDS from Marion Kaplan, moderator of one of the panels at the JDC Workshop
“Refugees, Statelessness, Migration, and the Work of the Joint”
- Dear Joan, I can't thank you enough for giving me your book to review. I read it in one sitting, couldn't put it down. It's beautifully written, gorgeously illustrated, and heartbreaking. Truly a story of rescue and loss.
Thank you very much,
Marion A. Kaplan is Skirball Professor of Modern Jewish History at New York University.
Professor Diana Cooper-Clark of York University, Toronto, Canada presented an academic paper excerpted from her book, Dreams of Re-Creation in Jamaica at the JDC Scholars Workshop on “Refugees, Statelessness, Migration and the Work of the Joint”.
Joan spoke about her family's personal experience.
The Krakowiak and Malafaia families will be featured with this collage of photos at the Vilar Formoso - Frontier of Peace Museum. This former train station is the point where thousands of refugees seeking safe haven flooded into Portugal in 1940.(See map - http://bit.ly/2vd9V9l ).
Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of Portugal, will be inaugurating the museum on August 26, 2017.
Joan will also be placing her sister Yvonne's yarn doll in the showcase (see square right middle). Architect and museum creator Luisa Pacheco Marques told Joan that she could not locate another doll of this period in all of Portugal. This convinced Joan to loan her precious possession to the museum.
Both Joan ad Mark Schonwetter, who credits his survival from six to ten years of age in the Polish woods to his beloved mother, spoke to the 7th graders at Haskell NJ Middle School in late May.
Joan and RuthE Levey at the OyToys exhibit where MY SISTER'S EYES is presented to librarians from Jerusalem to Frankfurt to Vienna and Sacramento among many other cities around the globe.
At the conclusion of her 2-mInute presentation before the Jewish Book Council, Joan showed the audience this photo album, which Hala gave her 41 years after their family secret was revealed.
Joan read the inscription written in Hala's hand on the inside cover, "Yvonne June 1, 1938 - June 4, 1942".
It's May of 1935, when Hala, the pampered daughter of a prominent family of Lodz, Poland, receives a phone call from her best friend inviting her to meet an eligible bachelor who resides in Belgium. Ignas has come home to find a bride. Soon after, Hala and Ignas marry.
In My Sister's Eyes, we learn how the grand illusion of their charmed life is catapulted into the harsh reality of World War II. Their ‘exodus’ across half the world following their rescue by the "Angel of Bordeaux", Aristides de Sousa Mendes, and their evacuation to an island 'paradise' leading to personal tragedy, is a Holocaust tale quite unlike any other.
My Sister's Eyes is available now through: