Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengele and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz

Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengele and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz

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Overview

During World War II, Nazi doctor Josef Mengele subjected some 3,000 twins to medical experiments of unspeakable horror; only 160 survived. In this remarkable narrative, the life of Auschwitz's Angel of Death is told in counterpoint to the lives of the survivors, who until now have kept silent about their heinous death-camp ordeals.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780140169317
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/28/1992
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 148,204
Product dimensions: 5.08(w) x 7.71(h) x 0.55(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Lucette Matalon Lagnado was born in Cairo, Egypt. She is the 2008 recipient of the $100,000 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature, the largest cash award in the Jewish book world. As an investigative reporter for the Wall Street Journal, she has covered health care for a decade. She has been a finalist or received prizes from, among others, Columbia Journalism School, the University of Missouri, and the University of Southern California.

Sheila Cohn Dekel is the widow of Alex Dekel, an Auschwitz survivor.

Table of Contents

Children of the Flames - Lucette Matalon Lagnado and Sheila Cohn Dekel Preface: Candles in the Night
Dramatis Personae
Prologue: The Jazz Bar
1. Mengele and His Children
2. Auschwitz Movie
3. The Angel of Death
4. The Angel Vanishes
5. The Trial That Never Was
6. The Story of Andreas
7. Fugitive's Idyll
8. The Angel Retreats
9. Brazilian Hideaway
10. The Scholar and the Preacher
11. The Burial of the Dead
Afterword: Children of the Flames - The Roll Call
Acknowledgments
Notes
Selected Bibliography
Index

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Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengele and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Neal_Klein More than 1 year ago
"Children of the Flames" does not set out to be a bad book. It tries to follow the experiences of several Mengele twins chronologically from before the War throughout the lives of the interviewees. The style of chronicling the lives of many people in this way might work for a newspaper series that is broken into stages over many days, but for a book, it doesn't quite work. Many of the people I spoke to who read the book find that they are referring back to the beginning of it to be sure they are reading about who they think they are reading about. It's as if the authors took a documentary style of storytelling and put it in print. For a subject with players from so many different places, you would think it would still work. It doesn't. My own uncle is featured prominently in the book - Zvi the Sailor. The significant detail you need to know before you put down good money for this work is that it is not accurate. A prominent Mengele twin who greatly assisted in the creation of the book disowns it for its inaccuracies and poor writing. My father, Zvi's twin, was never interviewed for his account. In fact, the book contributed to a rift between the twins that did not resolve for many years. The irony is that one of the authors is a writer for the Wall Street Journal. With credentials like hers, you would expect better in this book. I would find this book in a library. Paying for it seems like a mistake.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book did not take long befor I was sucked into it. The stories are heart rendering. The author put this book togather so that as you are reading, you could visualize watching it like a documentary on "THC". So few were able to escape and the ones that did will truely never escape. This boook is a must read book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a must read for anyone interested in the Holocaust. It is devestating to read about the terrrible things that happened to the twins.
nealklein on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
¿Children of the Flames¿ does not set out to be a bad book. It tries to follow the experiences of several Mengele twins chronologically from before the War throughout the lives of the interviewees. The style of chronicling the lives of many people in this way might work for a newspaper series that is broken into stages over many days, but for a book, it doesn¿t quite work. Many of the people I spoke to who read the book found that they were referring back to the beginning to be sure they were reading about who they thought they were reading about. It¿s as if the authors took a documentary film style of storytelling and put it in print. For a subject with players from so many different places, you would think it would still work. And yet, it doesn¿t.My own uncle is featured prominently in the book ¿ Zvi the Sailor. The significant detail you need to know before you put down good money for this work is that it is not entirely accurate. A prominent Mengele twin who greatly assisted in the creation of the book disowns it for its inaccuracies and sub-par writing. My father, Zvi¿s twin, was never interviewed for his account. In fact, the book contributed to a rift between the twins that did not resolve for many years.The irony is that one of the authors is now a writer for the Wall Street Journal and Sami Rohr recipient. With credentials like hers, you would expect better in this book. Lucette Lagnado very kindly replied to me within 24 hours (during a book tour on New Year¿s Eve, no less) when I asked her why she never interviewed my father. I told her of how the book added to the estrangement of my father and his twin. Her answer was a weak and disappointing one, if candid, for an investigative journalist: She couldn¿t find him. If you read the book, Zvi the Sailor claims he sent his twin brother, my father, money from Israel to America. If true, she could have found my father. If not, she printed an unconfirmed statement as fact. Either way, she made the deliberate choice not to interview a living twin. (Remember, the chance of finding both twins alive was small because of the experimentation methods used by Mengele.) She did not find the juxtaposition of twin viewpoints as a compelling reason to seek out a living twin in the U.S. where she lived and worked.As of the date of this post, Ms. Lagnado has yet to reply to my assertions on her journalistic decisions.
JanaRose1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
When I picked up this book I was excited to read about the Twins of Auschwitz. I have never seen any other book or information about them. However, this book is more about Mengele¿s life, from birth to death, with brief quotations from the Twins thrown in. Only about 40 pages of the book actually took place in Auschwitz-Birkenau. If you are looking about information on Mengele, you may find this to be an interesting read. If you are interested in the Twins of Auschwitz or information about the concentration camp, this book offers little information.
Meggo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A disappointing book - a fascinating and important subject, but written in such a disjointed style that the book is virtually unreadable. Told in approximately chronological order, the author cuts between stories from the Mengele Twins to the story of Mengele himself - one paragraph at a time. Far too choppy, this book would have been much better in two parts - one for the survivors, and one for Mengele.
van_stef on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love this book. It is an amazing book that tells the untold story of the Angel of Death. A very good read for any student of the Holocaust who wants to read something different about the Holocaust.
ijustgetbored on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book takes us from the youths of of Josef Mengele and his victims (briefly) to Auschwitz to the Nazi-hunting of the post-war period to the late 1980s. It tells these stories in alternating voices, stressing how necessary it is to do so: these stories are inextricably linked.The title is a bit misleading; this is perhaps weighed more on the side of a brief biography of Mengele, with emphasis on postwar activities. The stories of a group of twins break into the narrative in italicized bursts, fracturing it-- and thus reminding us all of how the horrific events of World War II fractured individuals, families, communities, nations.The book is an oral history of Auschwitz, told by those who survived it. Certainly, it is well researched (especially when it comes to the information about Nazi hunting and war tribunals), but the information in the "spotlight," so to speak, are the unsilenced voices of the twins. Do not expect pages of historical detail about what types of experiments were performed, reviews of medical cases, lengthy discussions of what occured in labs; that information is not there. This is a book about a handful of people and their stories, and while the book tells Mengele's for him, the twins tell their own. Particularly on the part of the twins, it is more a psychological study than a historical one (we could go into how psychology and history are intertwined, but it would be best for the reader to reach his or her own conclusions after reading the book).The text is deeply moving, often shattering. The voices that shatter the narrative of Mengele's life, denying the murderer any seamless biography, are vivid and alive. The authors picked a unique and, ultimately, extremely effective way to deliver biographies of oppresser and oppressed.
VSP900 More than 1 year ago
This was a very interesting read about a little known aspect of the Holocaust. I read a great deal of material on the Holocaust but I had never thought about it from the angle of this book. Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was definately worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dean693 More than 1 year ago
If you were ever wondered about the Holocaust and the things going on behind the scenes in Germany during the war, then this is a book you should definitely read. The story is told from the perspective of those experiencing the horrors one person could do to another, as well as probable death. From the beginning to the end of the book, the author focuses on the twins that were going through Auschwitz at the time and their first impressions of Dr.Mengele and their experiences at the Nazi death camp. What the author did when focusing on the experiences the children had was kind of a flashback type thing because, one minute they are describing what it was like for Mengele to grow up as a kid and then you would get a flashback telling you an experience of another pair of twins going through Auschwitz. There is nothing the author does, I believe, to detract from the story being told. It was always clear and concise what the author was talking about at any given moment. Overall, I liked this book a lot because I never knew the historical information the author presents in this book. Yeah you learn about it and you get the statistics but what you don't get is the true feelings and life that this book brings to you. This book is appropriate for mature audiences that know a little something about the Holocaust because it can get graphic and if you don't know what happened in the war you kind of will get lost pretty quickly.
DannyLeenerts More than 1 year ago
Children of the Flames, written by Lucette Matalon Lagnado and Sheila Cohn Dekel, is a book about the Holocaust but it is written from a different point of view than most books written about the horrible genocide. This book focuses mainly on the point of view of the twins and other people being tested on at Auschwitz by Dr. Josef Mengele. This is a book someone should read because of the fact that it gives you a different point of view of the killings at Auschwitz and because Dr. Josef Mengele is such an interesting person. He was a mass murderer but at the same time he was nice which made the people at the camps confused. In the book, Lagnado and Dekel would put quotes from the few surviving "children" of Dr. Mengele which added a nice touch. It made the story more personal and gave the reader a better idea of what the situation was like and how Mengele acted around them. One thing I felt the author did to detract from the content from the book was go off on tangents and somewhat get away from the twins of Auschwitz and focus more on Mengele's life. I would definitely say that I liked this book and enjoyed reading it. Anything relating to WW2 or the Holocaust interests me so it may seem biased but I think it was a well written book and it was incredibly interesting. It kept me entertained the whole time and I didn't want to stop reading everytime I picked it up. I don't think that this book should be read by anyone who hasn't begun high school yet though. The things discussed shouldn't be read by anyone in middle school or lower. There is some grotesque stuff discussed and nobody young should read about it until they mature more and get a grasp on the concept of death more. Before you read this note that it kind of starts out slow but stay with it because it gets interesting fairly quickly after that.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This was the first holocaust book i have read. This book made me cry many times in it , they way the nazi's and camps treated these people are unbeliveable and extremely shocking. This book tells the horrifying truth about the holocaust. Anyone who wants to read about the holocaust this would be a good book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Amazing yet chilling story of a life not so long ago when prejudice at it's worst was the norm and was so openly accepted by all. This book is so well written capturing the pain so many lived through-explaining not only how horrible the death camps were, but also the life that wasn't waiting for them when they finally were "free". Talks in great detail the way Mengele slipped through the tracks only to find that even though he managed to slip away from the court system, the life he was destined to lead was almost worse than the death he likely would have been sentenced had he been caught. An excellent novel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a very interessting book, one of the best I have ever read. It is extremely well written. While reading the book it feels as if you are there, living the lives of those poor people, but in reality you could not even imagin there pain. This is an excellent book.