'Return to Auschwitz' by Kitty Hart: Book Review

About the Author
Born Kitty Felix, the author was born in Bielsko, Poland, in 1926. Being Jewish, she and her family suffered much agony and brutality at the hands of the Nazis. Kitty and her mother spent around two-and-a-half years in Auschwitz-Birkenau, before being taken on a death march as the Soviet Army approached and later liberated. Both survived and travelled to England. Kitty moved to Birmingham and trained as a radiologist in the city's main hospital. Today, she still travels giving talks about her experiences, most often visiting schools . She was awarded an OBE by the Queen in 2003 for services to Holocaust education. Her granddaughter herself told me, even at her age, Kitty Hart-Moxon (as she is now known) still has an appetite for life and goes skiing every year!

About the Book
'Return to Auschwitz' was first published in 1981 but has also been published once again in more recent years. It is the second of Kitty's books about her experiences (the first titled 'I Am Alive'). The book was something of a follow-on to a documentary that Kitty made a couple of years earlier, with the same name, which you will be able to read about soon.
Kitty tells her story frankly, concisely and with interjections of emotion, but not enough to completely overwhelm the reader. The text is quite matter-of-fact. She states instances such as sun-bathing outside the Kanada complex whilst on the other side of the fence people were screaming and being gassed in simple terms, making very little apology for the fact that she had got used to these conditions. This may fill the reader with shock, but then again, one cannot comprehend how they would deal with the situation if in her shoes either.
The book talks about Kitty's beginnings in Bielsko; her mischievous behaviour in school and her disobedience for rules. She describes the outbreak of war, being on the run, being interrogated by the Nazis and finally being sent to Auschwitz at the age of 15. The camp itself is described in immaculate detail, and the reader can only find it astonishing that Kitty survived so many dangerous and life-threatening incidents as she did. Her character, strong will and fierce determination shine through throughout the book. Luckily, this is one true story with a mostly happy ending.
Having met Kitty, I know what a humbling and awe-inspiring woman she is. This book shows that in exactly the same way. Once I began it, I could not put it down.

Recommended for...
Anyone with a genuine interest in the Holocaust and students in the areas of History and Psychology.