Why didn't you come to MIT

Why didn't you come before the war?

Lizzie Doron, Why Didn't You Come Before the War, DTV 2017, ISBN 978-3-423-14545-9
Helena comes from "there", that place with the German name Buchenwald, which is inexpressible for the survivors. She survived the extermination camp and came to Israel with great effort. Here her story is similar to that of Aharon Appelfeld ("Story of a Life" - 2005) .
In 1953 she had a daughter in Israel and named her Elisabeth. And this Elisabeth will write down her story exactly 45 years later - Helena has been dead for 8 years - and publish it.

Lizzie Doron tells about her mother in small stories of between 6 and 10 pages, which are among the densest literature I have ever read. In these prose miniatures ... more

Lizzie Doron, Why Didn't You Come Before the War, DTV 2017, ISBN 978-3-423-14545-9
Helena comes from "there", that place with the German name Buchenwald, which is inexpressible for the survivors. She survived the extermination camp and came to Israel with great effort. Here her story is similar to that of Aharon Appelfeld ("Story of a Life" - 2005) .
In Israel she had a daughter in 1953 and gave her the name Elisabeth. And this Elisabeth will write down her story exactly 45 years later - Helena has been dead for 8 years - and publish it.

Lizzie Doron tells about her mother in small stories of between 6 and 10 pages, which are among the densest literature I have ever read. In these prose miniatures, she tells of her mother's experiences in a wonderful language that Mirjam Pressler carefully translated into German. Again and again Helena, who at first glance is thought to be crazy by her surroundings, wants to tell about what she experienced in the camp. And she expresses it in a strangely, strangely profound way that touches the souls of those around her.

While the literature of the survivors of the Shoah has experienced a renaissance in recent years (see the books by Appelfeld), books written by the second generation, the sons and daughters of the survivors, are rather rare. "Why didn't you come before the war" is certainly one of the best of all.
It is now one of the recommended reading canons for Israeli schools.

Once you've picked up this book, you don't put it down until the last page. It is a book full of humor and sadness, which in just a few words can make something about survival "in spite of everything" understandable.