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Janina Beauman was thirteen-years-old when Hitler’s decree forced her family into the Jewish ghetto in Warsaw. The young, bright and lively girl suddenly found herself in a cramped flat hiding with other Jewish families. At first even curfews and the casual cruelty meted out by the German occupiers could not completely wipe out her passion for books, boys and romance, ‘Perhaps we’ve been wasting the last bits of our lives not even trying to found out what life is?’ Then came the raids and Janina, with her sister and mother, had to keep on the move to avoid being one of thousands rounded up every day and deported to the camps. Their escape to the ‘Aryan’ side was followed by years spent behind hidden doors, where dependence on others was crucial, and all that a growing
girl craves, denied. Told through her teenage diaries, this is an extraordinary tale of a passionate young woman’s survival and courage.

Reviews

A magnificent testimony to the people of the ghetto ... a profound autobiographical meditation
New Society
A deeply moving but surprisingly unselfpitying book, a real pleasure to read
TES
Absorbing...Testaments such as Janina Bauman's are important and should never be allowed to fade away
Margaret Forster
A profound and moving book which everyone ought to read
Alan Sillitoe, New Statesman