A heart-stopping survivor story and brilliant historical investigation that offers unprecedented insight into daily life in the Third Reich and the Holocaust and the powers and pitfalls of memory.
At the outbreak of World War II, Marianne Strauss, the sheltered daughter of well-to-do German Jews, was an ordinary girl, concerned with studies, friends, and romance. Almost overnight she was transformed into a woman of spirit and defiance, a fighter who, when the Gestapo came for her family, seized the moment and went underground. On the run for two years, Marianne traveled across Nazi Germany without papers, aided by a remarkable resistance organization, previously unknown and unsung. Drawing on an astonishing cache of documents as well as interviews on three continents, historian Mark Roseman reconstructs Marianne's odyssey and reveals aspects of life in the Third Reich long hidden from view. As Roseman excavates the past, he also puts forward a new and sympathetic interpretation of the troubling discrepancies between fact and recollection that so often cloud survivors' accounts.
A detective story, a love story, a story of great courage and survival under the harshest conditions, A Past in Hiding is also a poignant investigation into the nature of memory, authenticity, and truth.