OVERRIDE

The Hours After

Letters of Love and Longing in War's Aftermath

Gerda Weissmann Klein and Kurt Klein

St. Martin's Press

The love letters of Gerda and Kurt Klein, revealing one of the greatest love stories ever told.

Over fifty years ago, Gerda Weissmann was barely alive at the end of a 350-mile death march that took her from a slave labor camp in Germany to the Czech border. On May 7, 1945, the American military stormed the area, and the first soldier to approach Gerda was Kurt Klein. She guided him to her fellow prisoners who lay sick and dying on the ground, and quoted Goethe: "Noble be man, merciful and good." Perhaps it was her irony, her composure, her evident compassion in the face of tragedy, that struck Kurt Klein. A great love had begun. Forced to separate just weeks after liberation and hours after their engagement, Gerda and Kurt began a correspondence that lasted until their reunion and wedding in Paris a year later. Their poignant letters reflect upon the horrors of war and genocide, but above all, upon the rapture and salvation of true love.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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Field Hospital, Volary [Czechoslovakia], May 16, 1945
Dear Kurt,
You are probably surprised to hear from me now—but, to be honest, your abrupt departure today, almost in the nature of flight, gave me reason for concern.
You might say, “You could mention that the next time we see each other,” but the desolate atmosphere here seems to have reached a nadir. Perhaps that has triggered my feelings that you heard something that upset you. I do not wish to pry into your privacy and your memories. Yet if you feel the need to share your anxiety, you will find full understanding
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REVIEWS

Praise for The Hours After

"This amazing testament to the steadfast love is a sunlit spot against the horrific gray years of the Holocaust...A common love of literature and decency binds Gerda and Kurt, who reveal their wonderful love story in this spellbinding series of missives." --Library Journal (starred review)

"Haunting...engrossing. The letters are suffused with romantic yearnings and touching plans for the future." --Publishers Weekly

"The Hours After is an account of survival, healing, and the triumph of the human spirit against overwhelming odds." --Anniston (Alabama) star

"This collection of beautifully written letters is unusual in its honesty and beauty, written in the face of such great sorrow and such exquisite joy." --The Jewish Transcript

"[The Kleins'] story is now filled in for the rest of the world--not in the sepia tones that one might imagine of the moments immediately following concentration camp incarceration, but in glorious, robust color." --San Diego Jewish Press Heritage

"[An] intense and moving story." --Jewish Exponent

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Gerda Weissmann Klein and Kurt Klein

  • Gerda Weissmann Klein and Kurt Klein lecture frequently and have written extensively about their experiences during the Holocaust. They have been married for over 50 years and reside in Scottsdale, Arizona.
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Available Formats and Book Details

The Hours After

Letters of Love and Longing in War's Aftermath

Gerda Weissmann Klein and Kurt Klein

  • e-Book

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

St. Martin's Press

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