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Auschwitz: A Doctor's Eyewitness Account

Average Rating 4
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(720)

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(159)

2 Star

(64)

1 Star

(64)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

266 out of 270 people found this review helpful.

Horrific Eye Witness Account That Must Be Read !

I have always had an interest in the Holocaust, but until I read this book some fourteen years ago, it had always remained at a distance. A reputable colleague at work handed me a copy of this book and said `this is worth a read'. Having begun, I could not put th...
I have always had an interest in the Holocaust, but until I read this book some fourteen years ago, it had always remained at a distance. A reputable colleague at work handed me a copy of this book and said `this is worth a read'. Having begun, I could not put the book down. The book gripped me from start to finish. The story is horrific but, nevertheless, it is a story that we all owe it to ourselves to be familiar with. The story and the author's experiences were so profound and penetrating that I have spent the last fourteen years studying and reading as much about the Holocaust as I can. Prompted by what I read here, I have since visited the Concentration Camps at Treblinka, Majdanek, Auschwitz, Birkenau and Plaszov, together with other areas in Poland directly connected with the Jewish Holocaust. I have seen the buildings full of human hair from the Jewish victims, the gas chambers, crematoria and the other hideous instruments of mass murder referred to in this book. The book by Dr. Miklos Nyiszli will not take you long to finish. The voices of the victims referred to have long since disappeared. Many people today are not even aware of the Holocaust and others deny it's very existence. Books like these, written by people who were actually there, are essential if our this and forthcoming generations are to be made aware of 'man's inhumanity to man' and to prevent such a horror from occurring again.

posted by Anonymous on October 11, 2001

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Most Helpful Critical Review

56 out of 100 people found this review helpful.

Disturbing but Truthful

As a sixth grader at Lincoln Elementary, reading this I realized that they don't teach most of the truth at school. This book opened my eyes to what really happened in World War Two. I never would have guessed that we as Americans actually did this to people also. It wa...
As a sixth grader at Lincoln Elementary, reading this I realized that they don't teach most of the truth at school. This book opened my eyes to what really happened in World War Two. I never would have guessed that we as Americans actually did this to people also. It wasn't just Germany that had these horrible death camps. America did this and this book made me think. I read all I could about this topic and found out some pretty gruesome details. I think I now have a better understanding of what really happened in this blood bath war. In school all they teach about World War Two is that some kids had to stay in the basement because of bombings. So what, they didn't have sugar for cake and candy. At least they weren't Jewish and at Auschwitz. Now I think twice about being selfish when there are and were people who are worse off.

posted by Anonymous on February 19, 2001

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  • Posted August 11, 2011

    Page Turner

    Although very short in length, this book places the reader in the sickening world of what life was like in the concentration camps. He shows that even with odds stacked against him that the will to live...and to be a witness to the atrocities for all to remember.

    15 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 22, 2011

    So upsetting

    Glad I read this, but more sorry it ever had to be written.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2012

    Recommend

    I found the book to be interesting. My OCD got a little hung-up on the grammatical errors and redundancy. However, it was a journal that was probably written in a language other than English and then translated.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2013

    Missing pages

    Book is excellent but e-book is poorly setup often missing pages in the middle of chapters.Poorly produced.Conent is 4 stars but due to poor producton problems is only 3 stars.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2012

    Anonymous

    I read the sample but could not bring myself to read the rest of the book. The reality of it, and how soo many innocent people suffered atrocities beyond the sane human mind. My nightmares and anxiety would have required a trip to my doctor.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Disturbing as it should be

    Not just an eyewitness, but an unwilling participant, in the grisly experiments performed on murdered Jews at Auschwitz during WWII. I was stricken with the lack of emotion expressed in the accounting of the day to day operations; a result of withdrawal in order to cope with these atrocities? One can only imagine.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2011

    Disturbing

    No one could really enjoy this book (maybe because it's very disturbing) but it's very informative. I found it a bit short hence the three stars.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2011

    Recommend

    It was a deep, thought-provoking read. Definitely kept me awake thinking about the atrocities that occured.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2012

    Chilling details of the work camps

    While I found this book interesting, I did expect stories closer to what I was told by a former nurse in the work camps. This book seemed to omit the details about the bizarre surgeries the doctors performed in the name of "research".

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2012

    Totally unexpected

    This book was totally unexpected. The writing style is very dry and clinical, without the emotion that this subject has a tendency to provoke. In detail you are confronted with the 'German effiency' of the operations at Auschwitz. You begin to understand HOW 6 million Jews could disappear and that that number is not overinflated based on the precision operation described. It took courage to write of his experiences and to stand as a living witness to these atrocities.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 15, 2012

    Hello! This book held my interest - but not much more than that.

    Hello!
    This book held my interest - but not much more than that. I wish I'd waited until it was on sale.
    The Doctor's story is curious in that he was working for those who were murdering thousands of his people every day, while he performed autopsies after Mengele was finished with them.
    Anyone with an interest in the Holocaust won't go wrong reading this book simply because it's from a different perspective - that of a Sonderkammando - and a physician no less. I just couldn't get over the "First do no harm" of the Hippocratic Oath.

    I guess we should be grateful that he did live to write this book. Otherwise the Sonderkammando story would have much less first hand information. He was even lucky enough to be reunited with his wife and daughter after the War.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 4, 2012

    Recommend for those who have doubts about the Holocaust; this should erase those doubts!

    This was a depressing book due to it's subject matter. However, it was enlightening about how cruel and heartless the Nazis were, and how totally ineffectual the Jews were. I could not blame the author for doing his best to stay alive - that is much more than the other captives did for the most part. Of course, his being a doctor helped immensely. It's hard for anyone to say what he/she would have done in their shoes.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 16, 2014

    Another Auschwitz book. Sigh. Thought this one might be a little

    Another Auschwitz book. Sigh. Thought this one might be a little more insightful. There was nothing here that I had not read before.......but it was still a good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2013

    It's okay

    Wasn't what I thought it would be.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2013

    Tough to put down

    Disturbing and depressing but also fascinating. What makes this man's story so horrific is the fact that it actually happened. All the more reason to keep passing these tales around so they are never forgotten.

    Skip the intros and start reading at chapter 1.

    In my opinion, the introductions were an arrogant use of 20/20 hindsight to pass judgement on the author and the Jewish people of WW2 era Europe.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2012

    Grisly book!

    How do you get a borrowed book out of your library after it is returned?

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2012

    Awesome

    It is good

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2012

    Unbelieveable Truths

    It took me two long days to read all 194 pages. It it so hard to understand how these events could possibly be reality and not fiction created by someones evil mind. It is true and it is evil. Halfway through the book I decided I was not going to read anymore. My heart was so heavy at the visions of mothers holding their young children, praying for protection for her child and her family. Only to be killed minutes later in a gas chamber. As a mother myself I imagine that to be dead with my sweet child would be a better fate than to be alive without them. Part of me is outraged at the author for not taking a scaple a shoving it into the neck of Dr Mengele when he had the many oppurtunities to do so, instead of dieing for the benefit of his people, he lived for thr sake of himself. As a side note Mengele was never captured and lived 25 years in Argentina. In fact, there is suspicion that he preformed expirments on twins once in South America. On the other hand, had he died noone would have lived to tell the tragic story of the events that happened behind the crematory walls.
    I'm left with a feeling of pity for the author, anger for him, and this wish that the story was longer. What was his life after his freedom? What of the promise he made his dieing lab assistant? What was life like for his wife and daughter?
    Sadly, this was not the first time in history that a person was hated for their race or religious beliefs and sadly it was not the last. Americans are not innocent of these kinds of hatred or even cruelty. (Thankfully not to this tragic magnitude) We enslaved the Irish and African people for centuries. We even forbade the blacks certain rights decades after WW2 knowing full well what hating a group of people could do to a country. Even now in 2012 we are in the middle of a battle for equal right for the gay, lesbian, and transgender community. Today it's ok for people to see gay people as less than or mentally ill. A disabilty that should be healed through therapy or prayer. When a homosexual child hangs themself because he can no longer bear the agony of being bullied we don't point fingers at the bully! No, we shake our heads and sadly think "What a waste. If only he hadn't be gay."
    This should be required reading in high schools across America.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2012

    Interesting

    This is an interesting vantage point on a horrid time in history. A doctor forced to help monsters and how he protected himself by isolating himself from all the horror by using his skills as a surgen knowing without a doubt that he would altimately be killed. In the end although he lived he never used his skills again. I'm not sure how I feel about this honest portrayal... I guess there really is no way to understand how this could happen just like it's hard comprehend Rawanda or the killing fields.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2012

    .

    .

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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