Clara's War: One Girl's Story of Survival

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Harper Collins, Apr 21, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 368 pages
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This heart-stopping story of a young girl hiding from the Nazis is based on Clara Kramer's diary of her years surviving in an underground bunker with seventeen other people.

Clara Kramer was a typical Polish-Jewish teenager from a small town at the outbreak of the Second World War. When the Germans invaded, Clara's family was taken in by the Becks, a Volksdeutsche (ethnically German) family from their town. Mrs. Beck worked as Clara's family's housekeeper. Mr. Beck was known to be an alcoholic, a womanizer, and a vocal anti-Semite. But on hearing that Jewish families were being led into the woods and shot, Beck sheltered the Kramers and two other Jewish families.

Eighteen people in all lived in a bunker dug out of the Becks' basement. Fifteen-year-old Clara kept a diary during the twenty terrifying months she spent in hiding, writing down details of their unpredictable life—from the house's catching fire to Mr. Beck's affair with Clara's neighbor; from the nightly SS drinking sessions in the room above to the small pleasure of a shared Christmas carp.

Against all odds, Clara lived to tell her story, and her diary is now part of the permanent col-lection of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.


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Clara's War: One Girl's Story of Survival

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Based on her wartime diary, which she kept while hiding in a basement in Poland, Kramer's book vividly recalls the tensions within her hidden community after the Nazis overtook the town of Zolkiew in ... Read full review

Exactly what I expected

User Review  - bonnieconnally -

It was exactly what I expected. I am very happy with my purchase. Read full review


My Grandfather
A Place to Hide
The Housekeeper
A Gift from Mr Beck
The Final Solution
The Arrival
The Love Affair
Days of Awe and Atonement
Valentines Day
The SS Move In
We Are Just Starting to Suffer
The Exodus
Zolkiew without Mania
The Diary

A Year Underground

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About the author (2009)

Clara (Schwarz) Kramer and her family were among the approximately five thousand Jews in Zolkiew, Poland, before World War II. At the end of the war, she and her parents numbered among the approximately sixty who survived. Kramer has served as president of the Holocaust Resource Foundation at Kean University for the past two decades. She lives in New Jersey.

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