“Why did I have to read this book to know that the “day that will live in infamy” included the first act of Hitler’s “final solution”? I was sitting outside reading, in the shade of a big old tree, and I read the lines several times. I immediately wondered if the Nazis and Japanese had an agreement.
I mourn the children that were “resettled.” I mourn those who went into the ovens. And I mourn the youth of Victor Breitburg, because he never got to have one. To see his mother and his siblings turn to the right and disappear forever must have been unbearable; but I admire his strong survival instinct and his ability to work hard on almost no food and no encouragement. For a moment I was reminded of Ivan Denisovitch. When the young Hungarian boy was shot for gleaning a spoon of sugar, Victor asks, “Where was the almighty to permit things like this to happen?” Well, where? I wondered if Victor has any real faith in God, after what he went through.
I don’t have many criticisms of this fine book. Perhaps I could have done with a little less of his and Lucille’s travels, but I don’t know if I could. But I loved the explanation of Diana Lubarsky’s sculptures.”
20th Annual Writer’s Digest Annual Self-Published Book Awards:Judge Number: 34
My copy has arrived, Mr. Krygier. What a superb job you did. As a person who has worked on the contemporaneous as well as memoiristic writings from the Lodz Ghetto for many years, I certainly congratulate you for making this valuable contribution to the literature. Thank you and all best wishes, Alan Adelson:Executive Director:Jewish Heritage
Dear Mr. Krygier, We would very pleased to receive an electronic copy of the book. If it is possible we’d also like a hardcopy. Thank you for writing to us. Dr. Robert Rozett: Director of the Libraries Yad Vashem
Wow, this is incredible for Yad Vashem to request a copy. That’s the highest praise of all for your important testimony and writing.Warmest wishes, Rabbi Micah Greenstein: Temple Israel, Memphis, Tennessee
Roni Seibel Liebowitz wrote:
“Lodz Kehila Links readers are very familiar with the poignant writings of Lodz Ghetto survivor, Victor Breitburg. He was one of the “The Boys” liberated from Theresienstadt, whom Sir Martin Gilbert wrote about in “The Boys: Triumph Over Adversity.” Now he tells it all in this important book written with Joseph G. Krygier, “A Rage to Live, Surviving the Holocaust So Hitler Would Not Win.” It has already been recognized by Dr. Robert Rozett, Director of Libraries at Yad Vashem, and Alan Adelson, the Executive Director of Jewish Heritage.
Although I knew about some of Victor’s experiences because of his entries on the Lodz KehilaLinks website, this book captures what a truly incredible person he was during the hardest period and at such a young age. His sense of honor, compassion, and generosity throughtout his life, especially given what he’s gone through, are commendable. He and Joe are a perfect fit . I look forward to attending the play, Chargrined, that will be based on the book. Mazel Tov to both of you!! Kudos!”
(Thanks to Roni Seibel Liebowitz with Jewish Records Indexing-Poland and JewishGen, for putting me in direct contact with Victor in November 2009 (I took my first trip to visit Victor in February 2010). Roni is also the President of the Jewish Genealogical Society, Inc. (NY). Roni has graciously added our information here: JewishGenLodzKehilaLink along with some comments.)
“Last evening I finished reading Rage to Live. (I’m a slow reader!) Mr. Breitburg’s life story is very interesting and a such lesson for us all. Thank you for your heart in compiling this piece – it cannot have been easy writing, but flowed so well and so intensely that I did not want to put it down. Though many times I needed to just to think through what I had just read. I am so glad I received your notification via email – otherwise I might have missed this great pearl in the sea of SO many new books! As you can imagine at the Alliance we are flooded with new book lists – if I only had time to read them all!”
I wish you all the best with the play version.
Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals
By J. Jeffery on Amazon
“This is a story that needed to be told, and it needed to be told now. If anything it is understated. The reader comes away feeling, even knowing that Victor has held back at least some of the horror. It is the story of a life, and the perspective is a historical one from the rear-view mirror as it were. There is a reality, an emotive earthiness, and a humanness to the tale of Victor’s life that flows from his honesty and openness. I am grateful that my friend Joe Krygier played a role in bringing Victor’s life story to publication. Perhaps this will encourage others who also have valuable Holocaust life stories to get them published for posterity.”
“Hello Joe..just wanted you to know I read your book with great interest. In fact, I read it so fast I am going to read it again so I can absorb so much more. I do hope you will continue with “Chagrined”. Your idea of perhaps a one act play that travels to many different audiences would be awesome!!! Hope you have great success.”
Marilyn Knies Erie BOCES