The Light of Days

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19 April 2022
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The Light of Days by Judy Batalion The Light of Days by Judy Batalion
BY JUDY BATALION

A timely release this year, considering the opening of the IWM London Holocaust, this is the story of Jewish women under occupation, in the Ghettos of Poland. The author is a Polish Jew descendent which, unfortunately, means that before getting to the heroines of the story, there’s a preamble full of pretentious and self-aggrandising introspection. Past that and the horror begins almost immediately.

This is when the Germans arrived, killing and looting. As that wave passed, the occupation began, the deportations and executions started, and the resistance built. It’s all presented from the perspective of those written about, with lots of dialogue and descriptions of people’s everyday thoughts and actions. There’s the odd quote from written sources, but you have to wonder about the line between fact and literary invention being crossed, never mind the occasional burst of purple prose. So, fascinating, with a great mono plate section, important stories, but some questionable aspects.

  • Virago
  • ISBN 978-0-3490-1156-1
  • 564 pages. Hardback. £20

 

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