Opening with the ominous scene of one young schoolgirl whispering an urgent account of Nazi horror to another over birthday cake, OzsvÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¡th s extraordinary and chilling memoir tells the story of her childhood in Hungary, living under the threat of the Holocaust. The setting is the summer of 1944 in Budapest during the time of the German occupation, when the Jews were confined to ghetto houses but not transported to Auschwitz in boxcars, as was the rest of the Hungarian Jewry living in the countryside. Provided with food and support by their former nanny, Erzsi, OzsvÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¡th s family stays in a ghetto house where a group of children play theater, tell stories to one another, invent games to pass time, and wait for liberation. In the fall of that year, however, things take a turn for the worse. Rounded up under horrific circumstances, forced to go on death marches, and shot on the banks of the Danube by the thousands, the Jews of Budapest are threatened with immediate destruction. OzsvÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¡th and her family survive because of Erzsi s courage and humanity. Cheating the watching eyes of the murderers, she brings them food and runs with them from house to house under heavy bombardment in the streets. As a scholar, critic, and translator, OzsvÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¡th has written extensively about Holocaust literature and the Holocaust in Hungary. Now, she records her own history in this clear-eyed, moving account. When the Danube Ran Red combines an exceptional grounding in Hungarian history with the pathos of a survivor and the eloquence of a poet to present a truly singular work.
Biographies & Memoirs, Ethnic & National, Jewish,