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The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz: A Powerful True Story of Hope and Survival

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An inspiring true story of hope and survival, this is the testimony of a boy who was imprisoned in Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Buchenwald and recorded his experiences through words and color drawings. In June 1943, after long years of hardship and persecution, thirteen-year-old Thomas Geve and his mother were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau. Separated upon arrival, he was lef An inspiring true story of hope and survival, this is the testimony of a boy who was imprisoned in Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Buchenwald and recorded his experiences through words and color drawings. In June 1943, after long years of hardship and persecution, thirteen-year-old Thomas Geve and his mother were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau. Separated upon arrival, he was left to fend for himself in the men’s camp of Auschwitz I. During 22 harsh months in three camps, Thomas experienced and witnessed the cruel and inhumane world of Nazi concentration and death camps. Nonetheless, he never gave up the will to live. Miraculously, he survived and was liberated from Buchenwald at the age of fifteen. While still in the camp and too weak to leave, Thomas felt a compelling need to document it all, and drew over eighty drawings, all portrayed in simple yet poignant detail with extraordinary accuracy. He not only shared the infamous scenes, but also the day-to-day events of life in the camps, alongside inmates' manifestations of humanity, support and friendship. To honor his lost friends and the millions of silenced victims of the Holocaust, in the years following the war, Thomas put his story into words. Despite the evil of the camps, his account provides a striking affirmation of life. The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz, accompanied with 56 of his color illustrations, is the unique testimony of young Thomas and his quest for a brighter tomorrow.


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An inspiring true story of hope and survival, this is the testimony of a boy who was imprisoned in Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Buchenwald and recorded his experiences through words and color drawings. In June 1943, after long years of hardship and persecution, thirteen-year-old Thomas Geve and his mother were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau. Separated upon arrival, he was lef An inspiring true story of hope and survival, this is the testimony of a boy who was imprisoned in Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Buchenwald and recorded his experiences through words and color drawings. In June 1943, after long years of hardship and persecution, thirteen-year-old Thomas Geve and his mother were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau. Separated upon arrival, he was left to fend for himself in the men’s camp of Auschwitz I. During 22 harsh months in three camps, Thomas experienced and witnessed the cruel and inhumane world of Nazi concentration and death camps. Nonetheless, he never gave up the will to live. Miraculously, he survived and was liberated from Buchenwald at the age of fifteen. While still in the camp and too weak to leave, Thomas felt a compelling need to document it all, and drew over eighty drawings, all portrayed in simple yet poignant detail with extraordinary accuracy. He not only shared the infamous scenes, but also the day-to-day events of life in the camps, alongside inmates' manifestations of humanity, support and friendship. To honor his lost friends and the millions of silenced victims of the Holocaust, in the years following the war, Thomas put his story into words. Despite the evil of the camps, his account provides a striking affirmation of life. The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz, accompanied with 56 of his color illustrations, is the unique testimony of young Thomas and his quest for a brighter tomorrow.

30 review for The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz: A Powerful True Story of Hope and Survival

  1. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn

    The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz by Thomas Geve was Thomas’s heart wrenching and emotional account of his time he spent in three different concentration camps during the Holocaust. Thomas was a young twelve year old boy when he was transported to the first of the three camps he would be in. One of the camps Thomas and his mother found themselves in was Auschwitz. He arrived with his mother but the two were immediately separated. He spent a total of twenty-two months of his young life in concentration The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz by Thomas Geve was Thomas’s heart wrenching and emotional account of his time he spent in three different concentration camps during the Holocaust. Thomas was a young twelve year old boy when he was transported to the first of the three camps he would be in. One of the camps Thomas and his mother found themselves in was Auschwitz. He arrived with his mother but the two were immediately separated. He spent a total of twenty-two months of his young life in concentration camps. Thomas shared his own horrific story both in prose and in pictures. His original sketches and drawings had been lost. Upon liberation, Thomas recreated his drawings from memory. He sketched them first with pencil and then added color from the water color paints he was given by his American liberators. His paintings and sketches were displayed at Yad Vashem and remain there even today. Many survivors of the Holocaust were hesitant to share their stories and deepest memories. For some it was just too painful to remember. Others felt guilty that they survived and millions did not. Thomas was determined to tell what he had seen, experienced and lived through. He had written two previous books before Charlie Inglefield helped Thomas retell his story in a more modern version. The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz was the combined result. The newer version retained all the facts but was updated in language. The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz was a unique account of the Holocaust because it was told from the perspective of an almost teenage boy. Thomas described his friends he made and lost, the meager food rations he was given, the places he lived and their conditions and the jobs he was assigned to at each camp. Thomas tried to find some good in those he came in contact with. The simple and kind remarks that came his way, often few and far between, helped give Thomas the will and desire to live and survive. To this day, Thomas speaks to audiences around the world about the Holocaust. He lives in Israel. Thomas lost his mother in the Holocaust but was reunited with his father who had managed to get to England before World War II began. I listened to the audiobook of The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz by Thomas Geve and Charlie Inglefield. It was brilliantly narrated by Mark Meadows. He was really able to capture the emotions, sufferings, despair and hope in his reading of this book. I highly recommend this book. Thank you to Harper Audio for allowing me to listen to this advanced copy through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. This book is set to be published 7/27/2021.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Christensen

    A heart wrenching account of Thomas Geves’ teenage years in Auschwitz and other neighboring barbarian concentration camps, during the Second World War. This book captures Thomas’ daily life and all the pain and suffering he endured, without ever feeling sorry for himself nor ever giving up. Thomas attention to detail, his drawings and his matter of fact way of telling the truth about the atrocities of concentration camps, has given me a far deeper understanding and empathy. This is humanity at i A heart wrenching account of Thomas Geves’ teenage years in Auschwitz and other neighboring barbarian concentration camps, during the Second World War. This book captures Thomas’ daily life and all the pain and suffering he endured, without ever feeling sorry for himself nor ever giving up. Thomas attention to detail, his drawings and his matter of fact way of telling the truth about the atrocities of concentration camps, has given me a far deeper understanding and empathy. This is humanity at its worst and at its best. Friendship, bravery and a few simple acts of kindness can make the difference between life and death. A must read for everyone. It is a part of history that should be told and never repeated.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Shiloah

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I couldn’t put this book down. What a story! I have a deep interest in Holocaust stories, especially after living in Germany for 9 years, and growing up with stories like the Sound of Music and the book the Hiding Place. The tragic stories mixed with finding courage to go on against brutality and inhumane treatment still astounds me. When my dad took us to see one of the concentration camps, we also noticed the prevailing dark cloud that hung over the area day and night. This book is about a youn I couldn’t put this book down. What a story! I have a deep interest in Holocaust stories, especially after living in Germany for 9 years, and growing up with stories like the Sound of Music and the book the Hiding Place. The tragic stories mixed with finding courage to go on against brutality and inhumane treatment still astounds me. When my dad took us to see one of the concentration camps, we also noticed the prevailing dark cloud that hung over the area day and night. This book is about a young boy who spends several years in three different concentration camps. His tenacity shines through the whole experience. He had to grow up far too quickly and yet he kept his mind on the future. I love that he became an architect after the war, building Jerusalem in a tangible way. He went to live in Jerusalem. I find it interesting that he felt more connected to his Jewish story and ancestors than ever after his experiences. For the gentle reader: He is open and honest about his experiences without being graphic. However, he had to ward off multiple homosexual advances and avoid being sexually molested.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Martin

    An incredibly intriguing and detailed book about Geve's experience, survival, and luck in three concentration camps. The drawings add a powerful extra layer to his story and make you get a better grasp of the horrors that he endured. This makes the book unique and a read that I will not forget. An incredibly intriguing and detailed book about Geve's experience, survival, and luck in three concentration camps. The drawings add a powerful extra layer to his story and make you get a better grasp of the horrors that he endured. This makes the book unique and a read that I will not forget.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jenna

    A devastatingly beautiful read. Thomas Geve brings to life the abhorrent conditions he was forced to endure, like so many others. His story is testament to the horror of human depravity and such an important read for all.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Nancy De Brucker

    Menigeen die me al goed kent weten dat ik alles verslind wat te maken heeft met de Holocaust; een thema dat me nauw aan het hart ligt. Ik was dan ook heel blij toen ik de mogelijkheid kreeg om dit boek te recenseren. Dit keer wordt het verhaal verteld vanuit de ogen van een jongen die op dertienjarige leeftijd in het hellegat van Auschwitz terecht kwam. Thomas ziet het levenslicht in de herfst van 1929 en had een heel vrolijke jeugd. Daar kwam verandering in toen Hitler aan de macht kwam in 1933. Menigeen die me al goed kent weten dat ik alles verslind wat te maken heeft met de Holocaust; een thema dat me nauw aan het hart ligt. Ik was dan ook heel blij toen ik de mogelijkheid kreeg om dit boek te recenseren. Dit keer wordt het verhaal verteld vanuit de ogen van een jongen die op dertienjarige leeftijd in het hellegat van Auschwitz terecht kwam. Thomas ziet het levenslicht in de herfst van 1929 en had een heel vrolijke jeugd. Daar kwam verandering in toen Hitler aan de macht kwam in 1933. Gedenk ook de Kristallnacht; de wereld van het gezin Geve zou dan drastisch veranderen. In de zomer van 1939 vertrekt Thomas zijn vader naar Engeland, hij was arts van beroep. Thomas en zijn moeder zouden hem snel achterna reizen, tenminste dat was de bedoeling, maar toen de Tweede Wereldoorlog uitbrak konden ze Berlijn niet meer verlaten. Er verandert van alles voor de Joden en in februari 1943 luidt het begin in van de totale liquidatie van de overgebleven Joodse gemeenschappen. Thomas en zijn moeder vertrekken met transport 39 richting het Oosten. Dit zou een van de laatste transporten zijn uit Berlijn. Als dertienjarige jongen komt hij met zijn moeder aan in Brezinka-Birkenau op 29 juni 1943. Daar op het perron wordt hij onmiddellijk van zijn moeder gescheiden. Voor Thomas was dit een plek die overweldigend groot was en hij kon het nauwelijks bevatten. Dan begint het bekende ritueel van douchen, ontluizen en laten tatoeëren. Thomas krijgt het nummer 127003 toegewezen. Vanaf dan is hij in de ogen van de nazi’s geen jongen meer maar een onmens, zelfs op deze jonge leeftijd. Het wordt hem ook meteen duidelijk dat dit een kamp was waar hard moest gewerkt worden en waar gehoorzaamheid een van de heiligste wetten was; niet gehoorzamen betekende de dood. “We wachten en wachten. Gruwelijke en nauwelijks voorstelbare gedachten kregen me in hun greep. Wat als de geruchten waar waren? Was er niet iets over gas gezegd?” Algauw wordt het Thomas duidelijk in wat voor een nachtmerrie hij is beland. Thomas' vage maar wanhopige vertrouwen in de beschaving ligt direct aan diggelen. Hij kon zich niet voorstellen dat er mensen waren die verantwoordelijk waren voor zo’n misdaad! Hij wordt aangenomen in de metselaar-school maar ook daar gelden er strenge regels. Het is hard zwoegen en het eten dat ze krijgen is heel slecht en vooral heel weinig. Hier en daar sluit hij vriendschappen maar is hij ook heel voorzichtig met wie hij omgaat; wie wel of niet te vertrouwen is. Alsof dat nog niet erg genoeg is, gluurt er nog een vijand om de hoek: de strenge winters in Auschwitz zijn ook wreed voor hen en nog maar te zwijgen van ondervoeding. Na zijn opleiding op de metselaar-school wordt hij in een andere werkgroep ingedeeld die ongeveer uit vierhonderd mannen bestaat. Hij probeert er gewoon het beste van te maken en heeft veel wijsheid die hem goed van pas komt. Vrienden komen en gaan maar Thomas is heel wijs en weet wat de wetten van het kamp zijn; doch voelt hij zich erg eenzaam. De uitputting is nabij na al die maanden in het kamp te hebben vertoefd. De SS’ers krijgen ook niet genoeg van hun barbaarse spelletjes en hun gruwelijkheden die ze op de gevangenen botvieren. Hoeveel langer kan hij de strijd tegen de oneerlijke omstandigheden nog volhouden? Het lijkt hem enorm twijfelachtig dat hij dit gaat overleven. In januari 1945 verlaat hij Auschwitz voorgoed en kan de dodenmars beginnen. Als vijftienjarige jongen moet hij vijfenzestig kilometer wandelen om daar alsnog op een ander transport te worden gezet. Hij wordt naar Gross-Rosen gedeporteerd. Na een tijdje wordt hij weer gedeporteerd en nu naar het beruchte concentratiekamp van Buchenwald. Daar krijgt hij het nummer 127158 toegedeeld. In april 1945 worden eindelijk de kampen bevrijd, het gekoesterde moment van de overwinning. Hij voelt zich als herboren maar er wacht hem nog een lange revalidatie. Tegen dat hij bevrijd wordt voelt hij zich als een bejaarde, veel te zwak om nog verder te kunnen. Het is daar in Buchenwald na de bevrijding dat hij alles begint te tekenen, alles wat er in hem opkwam heeft hij gekleurd. Hij wilde dit aan de wereld laten tonen hoe het er allemaal aan toe ging en hoeveel er waren gestorven aan ziekte, uitputting en ondervoeding. “Van het rantsoen waar ik een week mee moest doen, was nog slechts één donker legerbrood over. Daarmee zou ik me moeten voeden tijdens de beestachtige tocht die voor ons lag. Ik stopte het onder mijn oksels, want mijn vingers waren gevoelloos van de kou”. Wat een heftig en ontroerend boek is dit en het is eigenlijk dankzij Charles Inglefield dat dit boek tot stand is gekomen. In maart 2009 hoorde hij eerst over Thomas Geve en is hij ook onder de indruk van de unieke tekeningen. Hij maakt contact met de familie Geve en in 2019 had hij de eer om Thomas te ontmoeten in Israël. Daar krijgt hij het opmerkelijke verhaal te horen over de tweeëntwintig maanden die Thomas in drie concentratiekampen had doorgebracht voordat hij op vijftienjarige leeftijd uit Buchenwald werd bevrijd. In de jaren 1950 & 1980 had Thomas al twee edities van zijn ervaringen uitgegeven: ‘Guns and barbed wire’ maar kwamen deze boeken niet echt tot stand. In januari 2020 bewerkt Charles samen met Thomas het boek dat nu uit is gekomen en waar de unieke tekeningen ook in te pas komen. Zijn tekeningen, meer dan tachtig exemplaren, worden trouwens goed bewaard in het Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. Hij schetste ze eerst met potlood en voegde vervolgens kleur toe van de aquarelverf die hij van zijn Amerikaanse bevrijders had gekregen. De ontroerende tekeningen zijn allemaal op formaat van een ansichtkaart getekend en zijn heel bijzonder. De tekeningen kan je ook zien in het boek en over welke passages het gaat; ze zijn duidelijk en heel gedetailleerd. Er staan zowat zestig tekeningen in dit boek en dragen prachtig bij aan dit verhaal! Het is ook in november 1945 dat hij zijn vader terug ontmoet in Londen en waar de tekeningen eigenlijk voor bestemd waren; om ze aan hem te laten zien wat hij had meegemaakt tijdens zijn gevangenschap. Het is een heel opmerkelijk verhaal dat echt moet gelezen worden; hoe een dertienjarige jongen alleen zich in leven weet te houden tijdens zijn gevangenschap in drie concentratiekampen. Hij beschrijft zijn leven en hoe het eraan toe gaat. Hoe hij moet zwoegen en alleen op zichzelf is aangewezen. Het is met tijden heftig om te lezen en af en toe moet je het boek terzijde leggen om het te laten bezinken. Waar ik dan ook dikwijls aan moest denken was hoe de jeugd nu zegt dat ze het zo moeilijk hebben met de coronapandemie en dat ze van hun vrijheid zijn beroofd. Lees dit boek en dan besef je dat dit niets is in vergelijking met de vrijheid die Thomas en zoveel anderen werd ontnomen! Ook dit boek zou verplichte leeskost moeten zijn op de middelbare scholen, ze zouden dan wel eens goed nadenken hoe goed ze het in feite nog wel hebben ondanks de nu opgelegde restricties. Ook wordt er heel goed de nadruk gelegd hoe barbaars de nazi’s waren, de kapo’s en zelfs medegevangene die er alles aan doen om toch maar wat meer eten te bemachtigen. Ook hier worden ze onmensen tegen wil en dank. Tekort aan voedsel, kledij, loodzware arbeid, ongedierte en kindermisbruik komen hier aan de orde. Als je hier wilt overleven in gelijk welk kamp, dan doe je wat je moet doen en trek je je niks aan van anderen. Je moet en wordt zelf meedogenloos. Thomas geeft ons een kijk in zijn leefwereld en in wat voor erbarmelijke toestanden hij moet leven. Getuige geweest van gruwelijke drama’s en nog zoveel meer. Hoeveel kampgenoten er het leven hadden gelaten, wensend dat ze nooit waren geboren. Niet alleen omwille van het spoilergevaar laat ik hier niets los maar dit is echt een verhaal dat je zelf moet lezen en gewaar moet worden hoe deze jongen het heeft overleefd. Het is een mirakel! Dit is ook weer zo’n verhaal dat we zeker moeten behouden. Er zijn zoveel verhalen, allemaal zo verschillend maar allemaal even belangrijk. Deze documenten van de zwarte bladzijde in de geschiedenis moeten worden bijgehouden voor de toekomstige generaties en dat dit nooit maar dan ook nooit mag vergeten worden. Het is een mustread en een eerbetoon aan alle gevangenen die in een concentratiekamp hebben gezeten. Thomas heeft er goed aan gedaan om zijn levensverhaal op papier te zetten als actieve getuige, zodat wij het nu kunnen lezen en zien. Ik geef 5 sterren voor dit heftig, ontroerend maar waargebeurd verhaal. Het is een eer dit boek te mogen hebben en zal een speciaal plaatsje krijgen in mijn boekenkast. Koop dit boek in de lokale boekhandel want het is een pareltje om te lezen en hebben. Het is meer dan de moeite waard.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Candela

    Thomas Geve neemt ons mee in zijn persoonlijke ervaring van 22 maanden leven en overleven in drie concentratiekampen, tijdens de Holocaust. In 1938 is hij 9, als hij voor de eerste keer met zijn moeder in een kamp terecht komt. Zowel in woord als ik beeld legt hij zijn waarheid vast, als eeuwige herinnering aan onze menselijke roeping om een vriendelijkere wereld te creëren, voor iedereen. Zijn getuigenis onthult een wrede, kwaadaardige wereld die was ontworpen om verborgen te blijven, maar die Thomas Geve neemt ons mee in zijn persoonlijke ervaring van 22 maanden leven en overleven in drie concentratiekampen, tijdens de Holocaust. In 1938 is hij 9, als hij voor de eerste keer met zijn moeder in een kamp terecht komt. Zowel in woord als ik beeld legt hij zijn waarheid vast, als eeuwige herinnering aan onze menselijke roeping om een vriendelijkere wereld te creëren, voor iedereen. Zijn getuigenis onthult een wrede, kwaadaardige wereld die was ontworpen om verborgen te blijven, maar die door de getuigenissen van moedige overlevers zoals Thomas aan het licht is gebracht. Je leert over het dagdagelijkse leven van de kampbewoners. Hoe hun dagen eruit zien, wat de omstandigheden zijn waar ze mee moeten omgaan. Het barbaarse en bijna onmenselijke gedrag van zowel de SS'ers als van hun medegevangenen. Een leven van constante honger, van lange uitputtende werkdagen, van eindelijk mogen terugkeren naar je woonblok om in slaap te vallen in smalle drielaagse stapelbedden of op de vuile grond. Angst om uitgekozen te worden voor "overplaatsing" als het kamp weer overbevolkt raakt. De gruwelen waarmee ze worden geconfronteerd, maar ook de enorme kameraadschap tussen gevangenen die letterlijk levens heeft gered. Ik vond het ontnuchterend om een inkijk te krijgen in het overleven van een gevangene, iets wat de meesten onder ons zichzelf gelukkig amper kunnen voorstellen. Ondanks de kwesties van leven en dood die een dagelijkse realiteit vooor hen waren, spreekt er veel hoop, positiviteit en medemenselijkheid uit zijn verhaal. Hij bleef geloven in het goede van de mens. Voor mij persoonlijk een les in hoe belangrijk het is om dankbaar te zijn voor wat en wie we hebben, en hoe waardevol het is om je te bekommeren om een medemens in nood. Ik heb van het boek genoten, ondanks en misschien wel net door die rauwheid en echtheid die wordt blootgelegd. Ik heb het boek in e-book vorm gelezen, en de foto's zijn moeilijk zichtbaar op een e-reader. Dit is naar mijn mening een boek dat je in handen moet hebben. Je ogen over de foto's en tekeningen laten gaan, je vingers de contouren laten volgen van wat Thomas zo mooi en breekbaar heeft weergegeven en waar zowel pijn als hoop uit spreekt. Voor wie zich wil onderdompelen in het rauwe en eerlijke verhaal van een Holocaust-overlever, is dit boek een geweldige aanwinst. Een boek dat onder je huid kruipt en je niet loslaat.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Tally

    The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz is the first book I have read by the author. This book follows a young lad as he ages through his teenage years being Jewish in wartime Germany. The story progresses from the rise of Hitler’s powers to the various ways Jewish people would avoid capture, and the activities and jobs they were still aloud to complete during the early years of war. Further into the story the author explains life for people living in multiple concretion camps, including as the name suggests The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz is the first book I have read by the author. This book follows a young lad as he ages through his teenage years being Jewish in wartime Germany. The story progresses from the rise of Hitler’s powers to the various ways Jewish people would avoid capture, and the activities and jobs they were still aloud to complete during the early years of war. Further into the story the author explains life for people living in multiple concretion camps, including as the name suggests Auschwitz. This element of the book was most intriguing as it covered not just Jewish prisoners, but other nationality and religions along with insights and the workings of multiple institutions during this time.  The book is honestly the best biography style books, along with one of the greatest war-time books, I’ve read. This is one of the most binge worthy books I’ve read in months! It was easy to follow and captured heavy topics without being to much of a harsh read while continuing to remain respectable to those lost. It allows the reader to embark on a discovery of sections of the holocaust and concentration camps from a firsthand view. I personally learnt allot more from this one book than I did in all my modern history lessons taken in school. I would 100% recommend to anyone interested in this period of history. I look forward to reading more from this author in the future.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Hippiejo

    I am always incredibly moved by any historical accounts of what happened at Auschwitz but this book hurt my heart. I think the visuals drawn by Thomas Geve are some of the most profound I've seen and that they are the drawings of a child is devastating. The images in the movie Schindlers list of the confiscated personal belongings were forefront in my mind when reading Thomas Geve's account of people being stripped of absolutely everything they posessed including their identities and it's soul de I am always incredibly moved by any historical accounts of what happened at Auschwitz but this book hurt my heart. I think the visuals drawn by Thomas Geve are some of the most profound I've seen and that they are the drawings of a child is devastating. The images in the movie Schindlers list of the confiscated personal belongings were forefront in my mind when reading Thomas Geve's account of people being stripped of absolutely everything they posessed including their identities and it's soul destroying. Most of the time, the whole transport would go straight to it's death, like cattle to the slaughter. We would see them come in. Then their journey's end would announce itself with a dark, creeping smoke, slowly rising above the western horizon from the crematoria of Birkenau. ........ this broke me! Thomas Geve presents us with a visually vivid description of the horrors that took place in the Auschwitz concentration camps and if ever we needed reminders of just how wicked man can be, they lie within the pages of this book. But the book also reminds us of bravery, courage, resourcefulness and determination to survive against all the odds. This can just never happen again. 😢

  10. 5 out of 5

    Lily-Ella Bright

    The boy who drew auschwitz is the best book I have read. It is hard to even put into words how incredible this book is! Utterly heartbreaking, thought provoking, eye opening and yet optimistic and inspiring. Thomas’ book offers such an intimate and raw insight into the harrowing reality of life amongst multiple concentration camps. The colourful, childlike drawings of such a young boy poses a stark reminder of the young and innocent having their universal childhood experiences snatched away from The boy who drew auschwitz is the best book I have read. It is hard to even put into words how incredible this book is! Utterly heartbreaking, thought provoking, eye opening and yet optimistic and inspiring. Thomas’ book offers such an intimate and raw insight into the harrowing reality of life amongst multiple concentration camps. The colourful, childlike drawings of such a young boy poses a stark reminder of the young and innocent having their universal childhood experiences snatched away from them, swapped for the brutal, inhumane lives enforced within the camps. It is vital that Thomas’ and each and every Holocaust experiences are shared and passed down to following generations, ensuring the harrowing truth is forever told. Despite the understandably haunting memories many faced and longed to forget, Thomas’ resilience and determination to share his anecdote through his art and later words, provide a priceless source of historical evidence and information to educate and inform - I feel privileged and grateful to have been able to read such a personal first hand account. Thankyou

  11. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa

    The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz By: Thomas Geve and Narrated by: Mark Meadows is a powerful True Story of Hope and Survival This audiobook had me hooked and you will need tissues. This book/audiobook is an account of a brave young lad called Thomas who was twelve years old and his mother spent his time in three different concentration camps during the Holocaust and one of the camps was Auschwitz, however they were immediately separated from each other. Somehow with every everything that is going on a The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz By: Thomas Geve and Narrated by: Mark Meadows is a powerful True Story of Hope and Survival This audiobook had me hooked and you will need tissues. This book/audiobook is an account of a brave young lad called Thomas who was twelve years old and his mother spent his time in three different concentration camps during the Holocaust and one of the camps was Auschwitz, however they were immediately separated from each other. Somehow with every everything that is going on around Thomas he manages to keep hope in his heart, that one day he will see his mother again and they will be free. This is a well written story of a deep and courageous man.and an account of life in hell where creative solutions kept this young boy alive .... The narrator Mark Meadows was excellent. I highly recommend this book. Big thank-you to NetGalley and Harper Collins and Harper Audio for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Review left on amazon Audio, Amazon UK and Goodreads.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Katrien

    Dit is een ontroerend verslag van de holocaust door de ogen van een jonge jongen, de leeftijd die mijn zoon nu heeft. Het is onvoorstelbaar hoe hij de hele periode in Auschwitz overleeft en hoe opmerkelijk positief hij blijft, hoe hij dit leven als een feit aanneemt en verder doet. De tekeningen geven een extra dimensie aan het verhaal en geven de relatieve kinderlijkheid weer, relatief want een kind kan je niet blijven onder die omstandigheden. Er zaten ook feiten in die zelden in andere verhalen Dit is een ontroerend verslag van de holocaust door de ogen van een jonge jongen, de leeftijd die mijn zoon nu heeft. Het is onvoorstelbaar hoe hij de hele periode in Auschwitz overleeft en hoe opmerkelijk positief hij blijft, hoe hij dit leven als een feit aanneemt en verder doet. De tekeningen geven een extra dimensie aan het verhaal en geven de relatieve kinderlijkheid weer, relatief want een kind kan je niet blijven onder die omstandigheden. Er zaten ook feiten in die zelden in andere verhalen naar boven komen, zoals de vrouwelijke getuigen van Jehova die de huishoudster van SS'ers moesten zijn, of jonge jongens die de "vriendinnetjes" van hogergeplaatste gevangenen moesten zijn.... het wordt allemaal verteld door een jongen, want dit boek is een heruitgave van eerdere publicaties, die korter na de oorlog verschenen zijn, en het is goed hoe de jonge stem bewaard is gebleven. Opmerkelijk verhaal in een opmerkelijk boek.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Dan

    The amount of detail within this book is incredible, following the Journey from living comfortably with his family, through three concentration camps and finally his liberation to freedom. There is so much insight into the life inside the concentration camps for a young boy, and the friendships and interactions with others. While this book describes a most inhumane and atrocious period of our history, it gives the opportunity to see how those who experienced it saw it. This book is well written, The amount of detail within this book is incredible, following the Journey from living comfortably with his family, through three concentration camps and finally his liberation to freedom. There is so much insight into the life inside the concentration camps for a young boy, and the friendships and interactions with others. While this book describes a most inhumane and atrocious period of our history, it gives the opportunity to see how those who experienced it saw it. This book is well written, and I was thoroughly invested in Geve's story from the start. The pace is consistent throughout, and the voice of the author is well established and strong. In addition to this beautiful story, Geve's drawings made whilst still in one of the concentration camps are available to be viewed. These drawings are detailed and moving, and contribute to the book wonderfully. I would like to thank NetGalley and Harper Collins for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Scarcella

    The Boy who Drew Auschwitz, by Thomas Geve and Charlie Inglefield wrote the book on a true story book. Thomas, himself tells his story through his eyes of when he was 13 years old, who he farewell his father when he went to England to help with the allies. He and his mother were arrested and deported in 1943 and both were separated, then he received last note from his mother. He had to observe his story of barbarity, hope, and survival through three concentration camps. He remembered every detai The Boy who Drew Auschwitz, by Thomas Geve and Charlie Inglefield wrote the book on a true story book. Thomas, himself tells his story through his eyes of when he was 13 years old, who he farewell his father when he went to England to help with the allies. He and his mother were arrested and deported in 1943 and both were separated, then he received last note from his mother. He had to observe his story of barbarity, hope, and survival through three concentration camps. He remembered every detail around him and choose to tell in his own words and dozens of his own colour drawings. I’ve enjoyed the book because it keeps you interested and the drawings makes you feel as if you are seeing exactly what the author lived through. The drawings is a perfect example to teach young kids and use drawings to show through his eyes.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Howard

    I listened to the audiobook version of this real life story of 13 year old Thomas, which was well narrated by Mark Meadows. Thomas' life was devastated when he and his mother were incarcerated into a concentration camp and nearly immediately separated. Thomas went on to spend nearly 2 years in three different concentration camps, including Auschwitz. This is a story of hardship, brutality, endurance, friendship and many other emotions as told from the memories of Thomas. An incredibly important I listened to the audiobook version of this real life story of 13 year old Thomas, which was well narrated by Mark Meadows. Thomas' life was devastated when he and his mother were incarcerated into a concentration camp and nearly immediately separated. Thomas went on to spend nearly 2 years in three different concentration camps, including Auschwitz. This is a story of hardship, brutality, endurance, friendship and many other emotions as told from the memories of Thomas. An incredibly important read, which tells how things really were in these concentration camps - and how diabolically some humans are able to treat others. The prisoners existences were, overall, horrendous and, if they survived, they would go on to suffer a lifetime of nightmares. Highly recommended. Many thanks to Netgalley and Harper Collins UK for my copy.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    I’m not sure it’s ever appropriate or even possible to give feedback on a book that is based on such a real life and dark experience that we never wish to ever revisit. I’m so deeply saddened every single time I read a book from Auschwitz survivors and I always feel like they have been robbed of so much of their lives, not just the time that they endured in camp but the memories that stay with them for a lifetime afterwards. I am so wholeheartedly grateful for these men and women, I can only hope I’m not sure it’s ever appropriate or even possible to give feedback on a book that is based on such a real life and dark experience that we never wish to ever revisit. I’m so deeply saddened every single time I read a book from Auschwitz survivors and I always feel like they have been robbed of so much of their lives, not just the time that they endured in camp but the memories that stay with them for a lifetime afterwards. I am so wholeheartedly grateful for these men and women, I can only hope and prayer that after this ordeal was over and they approached freedom that their lives were filled with love and joy. I really am in awe of them, their strength and courage is inspiring and just so overwhelming.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kristine

    Thomas Geve was only 13 when he was pulled from his home into the work and concentration camps along with his mother. The story shares intimate details of the horrors of the camps, the pieces of himself that he lost as he could only think of survival, and his friendships that brought him a sliver of joy in a situation full of death and despair. He shares his drawings, simple black lines filled in with watercolors on notecards. They are the drawings of a child. A child who was pushed into these h Thomas Geve was only 13 when he was pulled from his home into the work and concentration camps along with his mother. The story shares intimate details of the horrors of the camps, the pieces of himself that he lost as he could only think of survival, and his friendships that brought him a sliver of joy in a situation full of death and despair. He shares his drawings, simple black lines filled in with watercolors on notecards. They are the drawings of a child. A child who was pushed into these horrors and forced to see true hatred. If we forget, history will repeat itself. The book's pace is consistent throughout the entire book. It is well written. The pacing of the art throughout the memoir is appropriate. Thank you to NetGalley and Harper for the ARC.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    I have read many, many accounts of life and death in Nazi concentration camps. This one stands out because the account and accompanying drawings were written and drawn shortly after Thomas Geve was liberated so they are probably more accurate than later accounts. Also--since Geve was only 14 when he was shipped to his first concentration camp, he has a different point of view than other adult survivors. His youth gave him a more optimistic attitude toward the future and he worked very hard to ge I have read many, many accounts of life and death in Nazi concentration camps. This one stands out because the account and accompanying drawings were written and drawn shortly after Thomas Geve was liberated so they are probably more accurate than later accounts. Also--since Geve was only 14 when he was shipped to his first concentration camp, he has a different point of view than other adult survivors. His youth gave him a more optimistic attitude toward the future and he worked very hard to get to know and support his fellow inmates. Despite its horrific contents, this book delivers hope and inspiration.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Daniel

    This book is a valuable piece of history. My only hope is this book does not get lost in the oversaturation of books that use "Auschwitz" in the title. It is clear we are in a fad period of books about the Holocaust, and Auschwitz specifically, but this is one of the gems that should be lifted above the others. The illustrations are so obviously drawn by a child that it becomes even more painful of a depiction. Everyone knows what happened and the horrors people were subjected to but having some This book is a valuable piece of history. My only hope is this book does not get lost in the oversaturation of books that use "Auschwitz" in the title. It is clear we are in a fad period of books about the Holocaust, and Auschwitz specifically, but this is one of the gems that should be lifted above the others. The illustrations are so obviously drawn by a child that it becomes even more painful of a depiction. Everyone knows what happened and the horrors people were subjected to but having something so innocent as a child's drawings depicting some of the worst atrocities our world has known is so powerful a storytelling device it is impossible to ignore.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    Thomas Geve lived in Berlin with his mother. Working as a gravedigger. As a teenager he was taken to Auschwitz with his mum. She died there. He survived and after liberation he recorded what camp life was like in drawings. This is what we need to preserve. A survivor memories of what actually happened. So many stories, all so different but all equally important in documenting history for future generations. The narrator was easy to listern to but I did expect a reader with an accent to bring the Thomas Geve lived in Berlin with his mother. Working as a gravedigger. As a teenager he was taken to Auschwitz with his mum. She died there. He survived and after liberation he recorded what camp life was like in drawings. This is what we need to preserve. A survivor memories of what actually happened. So many stories, all so different but all equally important in documenting history for future generations. The narrator was easy to listern to but I did expect a reader with an accent to bring the story more to life. Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for the opportunity to listern to this book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Bookwormbadger

    Many thanks to Netgalley, Harpercollins UK Audio and Thomas Geve for this audiobook. This book was brilliantly narrated by Mark Meadows who really captured the emotive nature of the story. There have been many Auschwitz memoirs in recent years and this is another great addition to the genre, with its unique teenager perspective, as Thomas was 13 when he was taken to Auschwitz. Very touching and memorable, however I would have liked to have learned more about the drawings... perhaps they weren't Many thanks to Netgalley, Harpercollins UK Audio and Thomas Geve for this audiobook. This book was brilliantly narrated by Mark Meadows who really captured the emotive nature of the story. There have been many Auschwitz memoirs in recent years and this is another great addition to the genre, with its unique teenager perspective, as Thomas was 13 when he was taken to Auschwitz. Very touching and memorable, however I would have liked to have learned more about the drawings... perhaps they weren't referred to because of this being an audiobook?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cassandra

    The stories of Holocaust survivors are always so heartbreaking yet inspiring. The atrocities that these individuals went through are unthinkable in today’s age but happened not all that long ago. This story keeps you interested and the drawings make you feel as if you are seeing exactly what the author lived through. The drawings would be a great way to teach the Holocaust to younger kids and use the drawings to show “through his eyes.”

  23. 5 out of 5

    Elisabeth

    Another viewpoint about the nazi invasion and Auschwitz by a boy who grew into a man and documented his memories in pictures. Unfortunately the website quoted in the audiobook has been taken down by now so unable to see the drawings. Delivered a gruesome image nonetheless by descriptions.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    A superb, moving and illumniating read.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    4.5*

  26. 5 out of 5

    Luke (That Reader Guy)

    This was heart breaking, beautiful and such an important read. Cannot recommend enough

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jules

    Geweldig boek over Thomas Geve. Indrukwekkend en erg gedetailleerd over wat zich heeft afgespeeld in tijdens de oorlog. Echt een aanrader.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Braekeveldt

    The Holocaust story through the drawings and eyes of a young boy who survived 3 concentration camps ....and not the easiest ones. Interesting reading and supported by the drawings of 1945.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Fiona R

    Did not finish

  30. 4 out of 5

    Piper Winchester

    Different experience through words and drawings. Haunting and interesting

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