Holocaust Fiction

Have you noticed how many stellar books and movies from the past few years have been set during the Second World War? They take the spotlight off of soldiers and spies and focus on ordinary individuals coping with extraordinary circumstances. If you enjoyed The Zookeeper's Wife, All The Light We Cannot See and The Nightingale, you won’t want to miss any of these new arrivals in Holocaust fiction. These stories, most based on extensive research or actual family histories, open heart-wrenching windows into the traumatic experiences of wartime.

Mischling by Affinity Konar

Pearl and Stasha narrate their experiences in 1944 in the Auschwitz concentration camp through the dreamlike prism of their shared world as twins. The prose is never graphic, yet hauntingly depicts both the despair and hopes of the young inhabitants of Dr. Joseph Mengele’s “Zoo.”

Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff

Two young women, both carrying dangerous secrets, have found refuge from the Reich in the Circus Neuhoff. As the German troupe journeys to France to perform, the two women must hope that the fragile bonds of friendship will protect them from discovery.

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

When the 1939 Nazi invasion of Poland tears apart three generations of the Kurc family, its members must each find their own path of escape. Their struggles to survive, resist and ultimately reconnect take the reader across the globe, from the ghettos of Poland to the gulags of Siberia and even the nightclubs of Paris.

Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Three women, a wealthy New York socialite, a German doctor and a poor Polish Catholic teenager, appear to have nothing in common on the eve of the second world war. Yet their lives will ultimately be connected by Ravensbruck, a notorious concentration camp for women.

Girl from the Train by Irma Joubert

When Jakob mistakenly destroys a train loaded with Jews destined for the ovens at Auschwitz, six-year old Gretl and her sister Elza are the only survivors. Jakob sends Gretl far away for her own safety but is haunted by his memories of the girl from the train.

-Rebecca Wolff, George Mason Library

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