I just finished up listening to the book In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer by Irene Gut Opdyke. I was looking through the listings of my on line library. I didn’t find anything I liked. I ended up typing “Holocaust” in the search bar and a few books that I hadn’t seen before showed up. Typically I type in historical fiction but had never seen this book.
As I was writing this review I noticed that the book is classified and young adult. I didn’t guess that as I reading it. The book didn’t seem as graphic as some novels do and I was happy about that but didn’t consider that the writer was keeping it less graphic for young readers. If put in dangerous situations I would hope to be as honorable, hard working, and helpful as Irene was to so many people. When I read books like these I always think to myself, could I have been brave enough, could I have been as for thinking, could I have put my life at risk? I so admire all the people who did.
People who risked it all to save others are the heroes in my life…people like Irene…the ordinary who do the extraordinary. I am not awed by famous people…I’m awed by people like Irene.
Here’s what Amazon has to say:“I did not ask myself, “Should I do this?” but “How will I do this?”
Through this intimate and compelling memoir, we are witness to the growth of a hero. Much like The Diary of Anne Frank, In My Hands has become a profound testament to individual courage.
You must understand that I did not become a resistance fighter, a smuggler of Jews, a defierof the SS and the Nazis, all at once.
When the war began, Irene Gut was just seventeen: a student nurse, a Polish patriot, a good Catholic girl. Forced to work in a German officiers’ dining hall, she learns how to fight back.
One’s first steps are always small: I had begun by hiding food under a fence.
Irene eavesdropped on the German’s plans. She smuggled people out of the work camp. And she hid twelve Jews in the basement of a Nazi major’s home. To deliver her friends from evil, this young woman did whatever it took–even the impossible.”
Amazon readers give the book 4.8 stars. I am going to agree. I really liked the book. I loved that the book followed up at the end and told facts about the war…told of Irene, the main character’s, life following the war and into old age.