They Were Good Germans Once: My Jewish Émigré Family

They Were Good Germans Once: My Jewish Émigré Family

by Evelyn Toynton
They Were Good Germans Once: My Jewish Émigré Family

They Were Good Germans Once: My Jewish Émigré Family

by Evelyn Toynton


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“This priceless recapturing of darkened history . . . [is] stunningly intelligent and elegantly written . . . Utterly engrossing.” —Phillip Lopate, author of To Show and to Tell: The Craft of Literary Nonfiction
In this moving collection of essays, Evelyn Toynton, “a wordsmith of the highest order” traces her family history, from her mother who left Germany as Hitler came to power to her relatives who escaped after suffering persecution and internment at the hands of the Nazis (Library Journal, starred review). Toynton only fully understood her harrowing genealogy as an adult living in New York, where she first came to terms with her connection to other Jews in America. Growing up, her family was German first, retaining the attitudes and the characteristics of the homeland they still loved and longed for, even as they built new lives in America, Israel, and England. Some, like her father, appeared to assimilate easily, while others never lost the feeling that they were living in exile. Powerfully rendered by an acclaimed author, They Were Good Germans Once is a remarkable account of survival, starting over, and the search for meaning and hope in a world forever altered.
“A poignant memoir . . . The author’s tone is often elegiac. . . . A thoughtful, notable addition to the literature of the Holocaust.” —Kirkus Reviews
“With Toynton’s signature intelligence, subtlety and wit, she describes members of her family—deracinated through no fault of their own—in portraits that are by turns surprising, hilarious and heartbreaking.” —Lynn Freed, author of The Romance of Elsewhere
“[A] tragic, comic, sharply observed memoir.” —Carole Angier, author of Speak, Silence: In Search of W.G. Sebald

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781504096034
Publisher: Delphinium Books, Incorporated
Publication date: 05/14/2024
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: eBook
Pages: 161
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Evelyn Toynton’s work has appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, Prospect (UK), the TLS, the New York Times Book Review, and other publications. Modern Art was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, and her novel The Oriental Wife (2011) has been optioned by Magnus Films for a feature film. Her biography of Jackson Pollock (2012) was published by Yale University Press as part of its Icons of America series. She lives in Norfolk, England.
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