10 Best Holocaust Books You Should Read
The second world war, and the Holocaust in specific, are a rage in the historical fiction world. Not only are they revelations and imaginations of the horrors of the time, but are also full of the humanity and empathy that made it bearable. Here’s a list of 10 best holocaust books you should read.
10 Best Holocaust Books You Should Read:
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
- Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
- I Have Lived a Thousand Years by Livia Bitton-Jackson
- Lovely War by Julie Berry
- The Diary of Anne Frank by Anne Frank
- The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
- Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally
- The Storyteller by Jodi Piccoult
- All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
In this book, the Hubermann family adopts a young girl called Liesel. As the war draws on, they shelter a Jew who has escaped the holocaust. This book is equal parts moving due to compassion and shattering due to ruthlessness. But it’s one of the most well researched, beautifully written fictional accounts of the holocaust.
The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
This book follows a Slovakian Jew who is sent to a concentration camp at Auschwitz. Here he is put to work as a tattooist who tattoos numbers on the hands of prisoners. Over the years, he bears witness to acts of human failure and triumph, tragedy and empathy, cruelty and compassion. Here he also finds the woman he loves, and vows to marry her after the war.
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
This existentialist masterpiece comes from the survivor of the Holocaust – a man whose faith in humanity shook and returned. As he recounts his experiences, he makes the point that our circumstances are inevitable, but our attitudes and reactions are not.
I Have Lived a Thousand Years by Livia Bitton-Jackson
In this biography of sorts, Livia explores the life of a young victim of the Holocaust and a member of a concentration camp, Elli Friedman. From luxury to confinement to ghetto life to deprivation to ultimately the conc camp life, this boom will devastate you.
Lovely War by Julie Berry
Recounted by Greek goddess Aphrodite to her husband Hephaestus and lover Ares is the story of four people in the midst of WW2. Aubrey is an Afro American musician sent to war. Here he falls for a Belgian chanteuse who has gone through the holocaust. Hazel and James are lovers torn apart by the war.
The Diary of Anne Frank by Anne Frank
This is the real life account of the Nazi occupation of Germany by a twelve year old girl. In her diary she records her experience of the most ghastly period of history. This account moves readers with its narrative, which changes from a happy girl in a loving family to a prisoner full of hunger and pain and ultimately to a convict in a concentration camp.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
This book describes the life of a young 9 year old German boy Bruno who shifts to a new home after his father’s transfer. From the home he can se a barbed fence, and beyond it people just like him, but in striped pajamas. He befriends such a boy, while pledging unquestioning loyalty to a father who commits atrocities.
Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally
This is a non-fiction biography that reads like a story – a story of the hope that Jews in Auschwitz saw manifested in Oskar Schindler. Schindler was a womanizer and an alcoholic, but also a saviour of Jews. He risked his life for them, and saved many of them from the holocaust.
The Storyteller by Jodi Piccoult
In this heartwarming story about forgiveness, Sage Singer, who is a baker and a loner, befriends an old man while dealing with her trauma. But one day, the man asks her to kill him, for he is unable to deal with the guilt of his actions back in Auschwitz. This emerges the story of Sage’s grandmother during the holocaust.
All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
This Pulitzer prize winning saga of the friendship of a blind girl from Paris and a tech savvy German orphan who is recruited by the Hitler Youth is heartbreaking. Even though it doesn’t directly talk about the Holocaust, it is still a must read, and has several references to it.