After Long Silence PDF/EPUB ´ After Long ePUB

After Long Silence To this day I don't even know what my mother's real name isHelen Fremont was raised as a Roman Catholic It wasn't until she was an adult practicing law in Boston that she discovered her parents were Jewish Holocaust survivors living invented lives Not even their names were their own In this powerful memoir Helen Fremont delves into the secrets that held her family in a bond of silence for than four decades recounting with heartbreaking clarity a remarkable tale of survival as vivid as fiction but with the resonance of truthDriven to uncover their roots Fremont and her sister pieced together an astonishing story of Siberian Gulags and Italian royalty of concentration camps and buried lives After Long Silence is about the devastating price of hiding the truth; about families; about the steps we take foolish or wise to protect ourselves and our loved ones No one who reads this book can be unmoved or fail to understand the seductive damaging power of secretsWhat Fremont and her sister discover is an astonishing story one of Siberian gulags and Italian royalty of concentration camps and buried lives AFTER LONG SILENCE is about the devastating price of hiding the truth; about families; about the steps we take foolish or wise to protect ourselves and our loved ones No one who reads this book can be unmoved or fail to understand the seductive damaging power of secrets Best of all worlds 1 A fascinating account of a dramatic time in our history2 Written in an intriguing but clear and logical back and forth through history manner3 Written with a love of the language bright stylish with each figure of speech perfectly matching the action and emotion of the momentThree favorite passagespg 209 210 Enemies were always available in all my games of war They were lurking in the bushes surrounding the house creeping under the barbed wire across the stand of fir trees at the corner of the woods Enemies could always be conjured up to fulfill the reuirements of life to offer the opportunity for bravery heroism and superiority Without enemies I was nothingpg 274 He kept looking for the old Batya the Batya he'd dreamed of for the past six year; he kept hoping to come upon her in an unprotected moment picking buttercups by the river or daydreaming in the sun But this Maria didn't care for flowers and didn't daydream She worked saved money and scouted the coast for an opportunity a ledge on which to climb She did not look back but moved forward with a joyless energetic will It frightened him to see how much she had become like him how much they had in common He tried to gather all their lost potential wrap it uickly in a bundle and present it to her like a bouuet of wildflowers But she was already two steps ahead of him plucking the petals and making jam stripping the stalks and building a futurepg 316 Perhaps the war had not changed them so much as selected their strengths reinforced them and made them rigid My father white haired and clear eyed with deep lines carved into his face had learned to live by trusting no one He would never let his guard down sacrificing his connection to others for safety And my mother had survived by dancing from one foot to the other spinning and twirling her way out of dangerWhat did I learn Perhaps that faith faith in something true real powerful and glorious is important than survival Survival gained by denying faith forgetting family sacrificing friendship is perhaps painful than deathI've also learned by trying the same tactics as the author that I cannot become closer to my parents by attempting to reproduce their hardships and sacrifices in my own life It may seem a touching tribute but in the end it's an insulting trivialization “When a writer is born into a family the family is finished' Czeslaw MiloszAnd I might add if the family isn't finished then the writer is” Gary Shteyngart Little FailureThe writer Helen Fremont is not finished but I got the feeling from the book review for its seuel from which I found out about this one that her family is giving her a run for the money That is what I learned a little about from this book I think I'll read that seuel as well in hopes of wielding it against grains of unfinished familial business dormant but recurrent irritants in hopes the light will catch and kill themShe's such a good writer and shiner of lightShe and her sister were raised as Roman Catholic and that's what she thought they were It could have been a clue that they never went to confession or took Communion but only if it came to their attention They were children and that's what their family did; how would they know any different They went to church but sat on the last row and left earlyThe parents were Jewish holocaust survivors from Eastern Europe who got stuck in their escape modes Apparently they socialized with other such immigrants who accepted the ruse Her parents' stories had hardened onto them in the kiln of traumaWhen telling those stories the author freuently calls her parents my mother Mom or Dad as in My mother was ten at the time or in August of 1935 when my mother was still in high school or Behind her Mom heard her mother fussing with the tea on the stove Looking back I see she does sometimes calls them by their first names too but those retrojected parental titles are startling She and her sister searched for the truth and confronted the parents who absorbed it up to a point but were always saying Don't tell Aunt Zosia It was Zosia's eventual reaction that brought home to me that they could not bendI know we should love others like we love ourselves but I forget I think people are being like they are just to be annoying or mean but usually they're not They're stuck tooNote on the National Emergency LibraryRight now this book is available digitally in the National Emergency Library meaning you can take a look at it or borrow it for free the one by Fremont Loans are for two weeks and you can renew no ueuesThe Internet Archive received kudos when it turned itself into the National Emergency Library for the duration But soon it received blame too Some authors complained of piracy saying readers wouldn't purchase an e copy of their older books if they could get it free Authors can reuest that their books be removed from the National Emergency Library For me the competition is with used books I much prefer a real book to any e version Not everybody can get one though and a lot of library systems are closed Anybody anywhere can use the National Emergency Library and some authors have reuested for their books to be included This may be the first memoir I've ever made it through because I'm NOT a fan of nonfiction If life were so interesting why would we need to make stuff up I read this book bc Helen Fremont is a friend of a friend and was a guest writer giving a reading at the community college where I taught at the time This book is a beautifully told story paralelling Fremont's discovery that her family was covering up their Jewish identity after the Holocaust which prompts her to come out of the closet to them the dynamics of honesty secrecy family etc are very powerful Fremont sacrificed a lot to tell this story Think about it if your family were hiding a secret for decades and you wrote a memoir about that would take guts wouldn't it Fremont is an excellent writer and a terrific person When she's not teaching at the Harvard summer writers' institute she's a public defender not a glamourous life Maybe it's not what everyone expects in their Goodreads reviews but I think a writer being a good human being is worth a bonus star At times while reading this story I wondered at any of the actual verity of facts It's not that I refused to believe this woman lawyer Or that I mistrust that she did not believe and desire to tell the entire truth It is just that I think the people who told it to her all had such emotional mental disability of after effect cognition that each and every detail needs to be taken with a grain of salt as to any context accuracy Even within the era and placements of these events that Helen Fremont remembers as real and actual Like her summer camp experience with not having to go to Mass on Sunday etc All of that just wouldn't have played as Catholic then As it is posited that her Mother and herself too understood any of the context to that dictate or camp's rules So I don't even understand how they could have self identified at all in the way her Mother did and taught her to react Not for any cover or purposes as her mother euated with success for it working It's not only illogical but it's revealing to any who would have heard those kinds of explanations at that time That would have raised uestions toward going forward with any approval for permissions You just couldn't get permission for missing Church every week like that or in that manner of determining that parental dictate yourself re Mass It HAD to be uestioned and addressed to the why part far than this report describes as final answer And it would have Do I know itIt's a story worth telling and one to absolutely tell But I don't think it was told well And yet told as well as it could be by those who couldn't bear to truly remember So much of this copy is told either out of seuence or at tangents to any core of the tale Filler almost Very poor 2 star in construction itself It sounds like the trauma involved was ever lasting and too dire to circumvent Possibly even unto the next generation for all the blank spots and silences And furtive family minutia that did not make sense to other than permanent identity damage is dominate here Actually when it was all said and done I would have MUCH rather read her Dad's autobiography including the years in Siberia that he completed before he passed which ended in 1958 He seemed to be able to witness in a higher degree and with personal eyes But if you want to read about outcomes from Polish WWII era atrocities and village occurrence aftermath for the few Jewish survivors in another century this IS a book to choose The problem is that you will only get it 2nd or 3rd hand while the original eyes are too punctured to relate it

  • Paperback
  • 368 pages
  • After Long Silence
  • Helen Fremont
  • English
  • 07 January 2014
  • 9780385333702

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