This beautiful, illuminating tale of hope and courage is based on interviews that were conducted with Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov—an unforgettable love story in the midst of atrocity.
“The Tattooist of Auschwitz is an extraordinary document, a story about the extremes of human behavior existing side by side: calculated brutality alongside impulsive and selfless acts of love. I find it hard to imagine anyone who would not be drawn in, confronted and moved. I would recommend it unreservedly to anyone, whether they’d read a hundred Holocaust stories or none.”—Graeme Simsion, internationally-bestselling author of The Rosie Project
In April 1942, Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew, is forcibly transported to the concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau. When his captors discover that he speaks several languages, he is put to work as a Tätowierer (the German word for tattooist), tasked with permanently marking his fellow prisoners.
Imprisoned for over two and a half years, Lale witnesses horrific atrocities and barbarism—but also incredible acts of bravery and compassion. Risking his own life, he uses his privileged position to exchange jewels and money from murdered Jews for food to keep his fellow prisoners alive.
One day in July 1942, Lale, prisoner 32407, comforts a trembling young woman waiting in line to have the number 34902 tattooed onto her arm. Her name is Gita, and in that first encounter, Lale vows to somehow survive the camp and marry her.
A vivid, harrowing, and ultimately hopeful re-creation of Lale Sokolov's experiences as the man who tattooed the arms of thousands of prisoners with what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust, The Tattooist of Auschwitz is also a testament to the endurance of love and humanity under the darkest possible conditions.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Based on a true story, The Tattooist of Auschwitz is a powerful, riveting tale of hope versus evil. British actor Richard Armitage (Thorin Oakenshield in The Hobbit) gives a stately-but-emotional reading of Heather Morris’ heartrending story of love amidst the horrors of the Holocaust. Lale is a Slovakian Jew forced to tattoo ID numbers on his fellow inmates at a Nazi death camp; when he falls for fellow prisoner Gita, he battles impossible odds to give them a future. Armitage’s moving delivery amplifies the suspense of the couple’s secret relationship, keeping us deeply invested in their story.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Hard to believe this is based on a truecstory
Well written and captivating. Unbelievable at times but I’m sure some author liberties were taken. What is an absolute is the horrific nature of the Holicaust... I can not wrap my brain around this history... it is ripped out of the pages of horror!!!
lacks emotional content
A deeply sad and gut wrenching story about one of the most horrific and despicable events in modern history.
While I appreciate the author’s work, I feel as though I’ve read a very watered down version of events. Please know, this is not meant as an insult, and I actually appreciated the less than gruesome telling of the Holocaust. However, I’m left wondering why the story was positioned this way. Was it because: 1) In the retelling of his and Gita’s stories, Lale’s memories had faded significantly, or 2) Their positions within the concentration camp left them ignorant of the true horrors within? Or perhaps it was a little of both, I’m not sure. But I would like to ask Ms Morris if she ever pressed Lale about this.
Aside from the above, I’m glad I had an opportunity to read Lale and Gita’s story about a devastatingly sad and inhuman time in history. It’s much more meaningful coming from those who’ve lived and survived one of the darkest, evilest times.