Always Remember Your Name: A True Story of Family and Survival in Auschwitz

The horrors of the Holocaust cannot be overstated, but for Andra and Tatiana Bucci, two Italian sisters who were imprisoned at Auschwitz as children from 1944 to the end of the war the following year, their tragic immersion in the daily reality of death and suffering became shockingly commonplace. "Death is everywhere around us," they write in Always Remember Your Name, their haunting and deeply affecting memoir of their time in the infamous Nazi death camp. "And yet, strangely, we're not afraid of it, and we quickly get used to this parallel reality.... We play around what Tati calls the 'pyramids of corpses': white, skeletal, striking." It wasn't until they were freed and reunited with their parents, who also miraculously survived, that they began to comprehend what they had endured and, as much as possible, to recover from it and build lives for themselves.

Using the plural first-person "we" as the narrative voice, the sisters recount their experiences during and after the war, creating a profoundly personal account of unimaginable trauma that combines their sometimes fuzzy childhood memories with adult knowledge and wisdom. The book's title comes from the girls' mother, who found ways to visit them in the early months of their confinement and always made them repeat their full names--both for practical reasons and as a way to retain their identities in the face of routine indignities. Now in their 80s, the sisters continue to educate others on the realities of what they endured, which feels ever more vital as fewer and fewer survivors remain. --Angela Lutz, freelance reviewer

Powered by: Xtenit