My Name Is Selma: The Remarkable Memoir of a Jewish Resistance Fighter and Ravensbrück Survivor

Scribner. May 2021. 224p. ISBN 9781982164676. $27. MEMOIR
Van de Perre was a resistance fighter in the Netherlands during World War II, while she was still a young woman. Now in her late 90s, she movingly recounts her work with Dutch resistance organizations and the people she met along the way. During the war, the author hid her Jewish identity and risked her life to protect others; she was eventually discovered and sent to Ravensbrück. After the war, Van de Perre moved to London and became a foreign correspondent. Memories of her father, who died in Auschwitz, and her mother and sister, who died in Sobibor, are never far from her mind. She shares her pain vividly, having lost most of her family and many of her friends, and paints a stark portrait of what it was like to live with so much fear, terror, and uncertainty. Her debut shares the incredible efforts of so many people fighting Nazism, even when the odds seemed insurmountable.
VERDICT There are many extraordinary books written by survivors of the Holocaust, and this numbers among them. The author’s voice, strength, and pain are palpable throughout; everyone can benefit from reading her story.
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