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Descripción de la editorial
The Nazis came late to Hungary because, until early 1944, Germany and Hungary were allies. But when they did arrive, their orders were to put the “Final Solution” into effect with deliberate speed. Soros, a Jewish lawyer in Budapest, secured fake Christian identities for himself, his wife, and his two sons following the German invasion of Hungary on March 19, 1944. In a narrative reminiscent of the great Primo Levi, Soros recounts his experiences with a beguiling humor, deep humanity, and a wisdom that is humbling.
Superbly translated by Humphrey Tonkin, Masquerade is a unique account of how one man managed not only to survive but to retain his integrity, compassion, family unity, and humor by “dancing around death.” Like Klemperer’s Diary of the Nazi Years, this very personal, low-key testament of the Holocaust is a gripping depiction of “normal” daily life under the Nazis—told by a man who triumphed by leading an ordinary life under extraordinary and terrifying circumstances.
A hopeful book about the Holocaust is a rare find. Billionaire financier George Soros, the author's son, is known for his optimistic, bold philanthropical support of open societies in post-Communist Eastern Europe. After reading this sober but surprisingly cheerful memoir, it's clear where George got these traits. Few Holocaust memoirs begin with statements like "Life is beautiful and full of variety and adventure. But luck must be on your side." But survival took wiles and connections as well. As life worsened for Hungarian Jews in 1944, Soros, a Budapest lawyer, managed to find false Christian papers and hiding places for his family. The Soroses struggled daily against possible discovery and death. Soros relates the fascinating details of his search for hiding places and skilled document forgers. The book's remarkable, upbeat tone predominates: even as Hungary falls to homegrown fascists and his acquaintances are killed, Soros views his travails as a game he will win. The book is a tribute to the power of the individual to maneuver through devastating, dangerous circumstances. Originally published in Esperanto in 1965 (the author died in 1986), the book was recently rediscovered by Paul Soros's daughter-in-law. Those interested in the Holocaust and in the psychology of survival will find it compelling, as will those seeking inspiration. Eight pages b&w photos not seen by PW.