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Inclou el nom: Judith Batalion

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Batalion, Judith
Lloc de naixement
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Llocs de residència
New York, New York, USA
Biografia breu
Judy Batalion is the author of White Walls: A Memoir About Motherhood, Daughterhood and the Mess in Between. She has written for the New York Times, Vogue, the Washington Post and many other publications. Prior to her writing career, she was an academic and is fluent in both Yiddish and Hebrew. Born and raised in Montreal, she now lives in New York with her husband and children.



I received a free copy in a Goodreads Giveaway – thanks Goodreads!
escapinginpaper | Hi ha 20 ressenyes més | May 18, 2024 |
The Light of Days follows several women through the build-up to, course of, and aftermath of World War II in their efforts to survive, fight back, help others survive, and escape.

The stories of these women are absolutely incredible. These women were able to accomplish so much in their resistance. The bravery and strength they had is immense, and their stories deserve to be told.

I just don't think Judy Batalion told these stories in the way they deserved. The narration of their stories jumped back-and-forth between different people, making it even more difficult to tell who was being talked about due to their many different aliases. It also repeated some of the information so many times, like the specific ways in which they disguised themselves, that it felt as if the focus was less on these women and what they accomplished and more on the general lives of Jews in Europe at that time.

These women's thoughts were also mentioned throughout the book, with no real indicator of where Batalion got these thoughts from. Because of this, combined with the slightly monotonous audiobook reading, there were times it felt more like a fictionalized retelling of what these women had done, almost to distance the author and reader from the actual events that occurred.
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Griffin_Reads | Hi ha 20 ressenyes més | Feb 26, 2024 |
This is a really hard book to give a fair review. It's one of the few books about WW2 that seems to give so much space for the brutalities that happened. In that aspect it's interesting that it talks about so much about things that other books refuse to. Especially because it does talk about and acknowledge the sexual assault and the rape that did happen... buts also hard not to think about how it feels like too much. But the entire time frame WAS brutal, I don't think these stories should be edited to be palatable, we shouldn't look at WW2 and the damage that was done by the nazis and just be able to exist with it.

But that being said, I do struggle with the way the stories are written. There's lots of situations where we are shown the leading ladies "last words" but I have a hard time believing them? Maybe that's my bias, but when the accounting themselves from the resource materials is rather vague and may or may not be really factual, (ie from the afterwords by the author herself) its rather frustrating.
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MiserableFlower | Hi ha 20 ressenyes més | Jan 21, 2024 |
Judy Batalion introduces her groundbreaking study of Polish resistance against the Nazis by describing her 12-year search for the Jewish women who played a vital role. What she uncovers, in excoriating and poignant detail, are the stories of the ‘ghetto girls’ who paid off Gestapo guards, hid revolvers in loaves of bread and messages in their pigtails and fought in armed struggles. These women, their beliefs, their friendships and their extraordinary sacrifice emerge from the shadows. Without sentimentalising their achievements and the price paid for the risks they took to save their families, friends and community, Batalion’s collective biography provides a significant contribution to Holocaust history.

While dozens of women carried out rebellious acts, which consisted of everything from espionage missions for Moscow to flirting with Nazis, or bribing them with whisky, wine and pastries, a handful form the book’s narrative arc. The most detailed story is that of Renia Kukielka, who was among the few who survived, escaping to Palestine in 1944. With her sister Sarah, the Kukielka sisters were couriers for Freedom, one of the prewar youth movements that provided a network for the resisters. Renia’s memoir, published in 1945, is a rare first-person account bearing witness to the women’s motivations, their ingenuity in surviving, their loyalty to their comrades and the losses they suffered.

When the Nazis invaded their hometown of Będzin in 1939, the Kukielka family had fled to relatives in nearby Jędrzejów where they were later forced into a ghetto, one of the 400 established throughout the country. With her ‘Polish looks’ and an education that had given her fluent Polish, Renia Kukielka was able to acquire fake documents and return to Będzin, where she joined the resistance, networks of young Jews who ‘created a novel kind of family life to help heal from the ones that had been destroyed’.

Read the rest of the review at

Julie Wheelwright is the author of Sisters in Arms: Female Warriors from Antiquity to the New Millennium (Osprey, 2020).
… (més)
HistoryToday | Hi ha 20 ressenyes més | Sep 1, 2023 |



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