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Book Review-Donna Barnett

I had to wipe away my flood of tears before writing this! Hands of Gold was magnificent. I am passing it on to every Jewish person I know. It deserves every single award it’s received, even though I know nothing about them!

Why, you might want to know? I have read many, many books on that era and the holocaust, as I am sure you have too, but this was a story to embrace like no other. From the first page to the last, I was captured by Sam and Hannah; experiencing their lives as if sitting down to a chicken dinner at their table. I gave faces and expressions to every family member as their children married and had their own children. I became a part of their family – good, bad, tormenting, sorrowful, but above all, triumphant.

Being Jewish made reading the book all the sweeter. I was familiar with most of the Yiddish terms and often laughed when used. I could relate to Jewish customs, wondering if my distant relatives went through similar times. My grandfather, who died when I was 9 (and my grandmother when I was 8), was from Czechoslovakia. I was never told of his coming to America and wondered throughout the book, if he went through similar circumstances. He was one of 5 children, but everyone died when I was just a little girl. My parents were only children, died young as well, so I am without this history.

I honestly could not put this book down. I ordered it from Amazon and read it in three days. I normally read thrillers from David Baldacci, John Grisham, Harlan Coben, James Grippando, and many on the Holocaust. This book was captivating, romantic, funny, delightful and motivating. I am a nurse as well as an aspiring writer, so envisioning Sam go through years of TB is unfathomable. The tenacity, determination and perseverance to recover so he could get back to his family was remarkable – a lesson to us all.

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