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Motherland: Beyond the Holocaust: A Mother-Daughter Journey to Reclaim the Past

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2009

    Motherland (Central)

    A story about a mom uncovering her memories of the Holocaust and her childhood, and the journey that her daughter takes with her. Motherland, written by Fern Schumer Chapman, pulls you in. Once you pick it up, you are intrigued by the story.
    Fern and her mother Edith travel to Germany, back to Edith's childhood town. Upon their arrival, a welcoming committee basically awaits her, excited that she has finally come back. As Edith is uncovering her past, the people of the town uncover their past as well, which they are ashamed of. Fern slowly finds out more and more about her mother, therefore finding out a part of herself that she did not know. This story reminds us that remembering your past can either be a blessing or a burden.
    This historical fiction story rolls along very nicely. It flows. The way the author writes makes you want to keep reading. Her colorful and descriptive language paints the picture for you. Although at times the author describes unnecessary things, and these parts drag on, making you want to put the book down.
    Fern Schumer Chapman, a former reporter for The Chicago Tribune, has written a work of art. She taught at Northwestern University and has written for many famous publications. Some of her other accomplishments are winning Illinois Author of the Year in 2004 and her book was a finalist for the National Jewish Book Awards.
    I would give this book four stars. Although this wonderfully written book has a great plot and interesting and unique theme, parts of it can grow boring with unnecessary detail. This book is very creative and brings an idea that not many people think about: how much their past and the past of their relatives affect them.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2005

    A beautiful and necessary story

    Our book club selected this book and I really enjoyed it. It gave me a personal perspective on the war and the holocaust that I hadn't considered. The healing in the characters was wonderful to witness. Having lost my parents in a tragedy, I feel like an orphan even as an adult and can relate to Fern wanting the history she lacks in her own life story. I often thought of the bible saying the sins of a father will last for generations...this book showed how generations are affected by an event, a choice, a tragedy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2002

    Great book,touching novel

    Outstanding book. Pulled me in right away with subject and characters that were so real and interesting. I could definitely identify with having a very private mother who did not share her life and history with her children willingly. Hearing about Fern's mother made me see the many layers to a persons life that can create this hesitantcy to share.

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