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As her mother slipped into the darkness of old age, Lisa Appignanesi began to realise how little she knew of the reality behind the tales she had heard since childhood. She had shunned her parents’ stories of war-time Poland, but now she set out to find the truth. In her quest she flew to Warsaw – imagining and revisiting a past she never knew.

This is the moving story of the Jews who survived outside the camps, but it is also the author’s own voyage of self-discovery – a family memoir of the rites of passage of emigration, childhood, and growing up an outsider in a closed community