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Toulouse Women's International Group


Next Reading Group Meeting

Venue: Sabine’s house in Plaisance du Touch

Date: Monday 3rd June

Time: 2pm

Contact: Karen Burroughs or Joyce Booth

Details: ‘History of Bees’ by Maja Lunde

Reading Group Review – ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz’ by Heather Morris

TWIG Reading Group May 2019

‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz’ by Heather Morris is a best selling novel published in 2018. However for the majority of the reading group at this month’s meeting it was a great disappointment. It attempts to tell ‘the powerful true story of Lale Sokolov’ who was a Slovakian Jew imprisoned in Auschwitz in 1942. He was given the job of the person who tattooed a number on the arms of the prisoners as they arrived in this horrific place.
He met his wife in the camp, they both survived and married after the war.
The book is written in the present tense. Many of us felt the prose was simplistic and very poorly written. Apparently it was originally written as a screenplay and it’s disjointed style reflects this. It reads like a ‘Mills and Boon’ love story not the story of survivors of such horror.
Lale was 87years old when he was interviewed over a period of three years by the author but her attention to detail and subsequent research a pear to be sadly lacking.
The Auschwitz Memorial Research centre has criticized this book saying amongst other things “This book contains numerous errors and information inconsistent with the facts as well as exaggeration, misunderstanding and understatements”
Whilst this is a novel and not a history book we felt that because this is the story of a real person he deserved much better treatment. There are much better books than this about Auschwitz.