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Bella and Chaim
The Story of Beauty and Life
Author: Sara Rena Vidal RRP A$9.99 (Ebook)
Publisher: Hybrid Publishers Pub Date: 2017-09-01
BIC Category: Memoirs ISBN: 9781925281453
BISAC Category1: BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Personal Memoirs
BISAC Category2: BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Cultural Heritage


PICK OF THE WEEK’: “Sara Rena Vidal's imaginative story of her parents' war …” - Steven Carroll in Spectrum (The Age (Melbourne) & Sydney Morning Herald) 9/12/2017
 “... the author has used the power of multiple sources of words to conjure the immediacy of a vanished world.  I haven’t read anything quite like it before.” - Lisa Hill ANZLitLovers.
“Wonderful book; deeply researched, scholarly, heartfelt and well written.” - Emeritus Professor Roger Fay, University of Tasmania
‘... what an intrinsic and fascinating … ultimately beautiful dedication to family to faith and to life. So thoroughly researched too. A life's work for sure ...’ - Stella Kinsella, Williamstown.
“This memoir ... refuses to defer to hate and yearns to inspire a more humane future.” - Emeritus Professor Richard Freadman, LaTrobe University.
“... a beautiful way to end, so full of a sense of our common humanity and our connection to everything on this planet if we are open to it.” - India Bell, Sydney
In which my longing for that which is lost
as well as for that which might yet be
as told from memory fragments, journal jottings,
and delving into history past and present,
intertwining with my parents’ stories of more than survival,
traverses despair to find transformation, home, and gratitude.
So the generations will know, and choose life –
after all it is a commandment.
For Bella and Chaim. And for those to come.
Encompassing this true story of Bella and Chaim, the author’s parents, with the intergenerational trauma of being a child of survivors, this memoir of love, loss and gratitude, is a testament to the human spirit as well as a call to rise above: ashes, victimhood, and generalizations.
Bella and Chaim met and fell in love in the Warsaw Ghetto where they witnessed the destruction of a way of life; sole survivors of both their families, they were in the ghetto until its last days then endured entombment for eighteen months before rescue, liberation, and immigration to begin anew in Australia.
A flowing collage embracing and mingling survivor-memory, recorded and analyzed historical context, and memory-fragments of Melbourne in the 1950s, with real-time musings on the light, dark and potential of being alive. Honoring the murdered and the righteous, reminding us that our choices matter, ever present are the dilemma’s and challenges facing us today. Augmented with photos, maps, a chapter on sources, bibliography, endnotes and an index, this book can be read as an inspirational story and/or utilized as a well-researched resource for in-depth study.

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