Mischling

Mischling

A Novel

eBook - 2016
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"One of the most harrowing, powerful, and imaginative books of the year" (Anthony Doerr) about twin sisters fighting to survive the evils of World War II.


Pearl is in charge of: the sad, the good, the past. Stasha must care for: the funny, the future, the bad.
It's 1944 when the twin sisters arrive at Auschwitz with their mother and grandfather. In their benighted new world, Pearl and Stasha Zagorski take refuge in their identical natures, comforting themselves with the private language and shared games of their childhood.
As part of the experimental population of twins known as Mengele's Zoo, the girls experience privileges and horrors unknown to others, and they find themselves changed, stripped of the personalities they once shared, their identities altered by the burdens of guilt and pain.
That winter, at a concert orchestrated by Mengele, Pearl disappears. Stasha grieves for her twin, but clings to the possibility that Pearl remains alive. When the camp is liberated by the Red Army, she and her companion Feliks--a boy bent on vengeance for his own lost twin--travel through Poland's devastation. Undeterred by injury, starvation, or the chaos around them, motivated by equal parts danger and hope, they encounter hostile villagers, Jewish resistance fighters, and fellow refugees, their quest enabled by the notion that Mengele may be captured and brought to justice within the ruins of the Warsaw Zoo. As the young survivors discover what has become of the world, they must try to imagine a future within it.
A superbly crafted story, told in a voice as exquisite as it is boundlessly original, Mischling defies every expectation, traversing one of the darkest moments in human history to show us the way toward ethereal beauty, moral reckoning, and soaring hope.
Publisher: New York : Random House of Canada, 2016.
ISBN: 9780345816436
Characteristics: text file
1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc. - Distributor

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samdog123 Sep 01, 2017

A heartbreaking story of twins, Pearl and Stascha, who endured the terrors of Mengele's 'zoo' in Auschwitz. Not much is uplifting in this story, yet the writer is very talented and almost gives this setting a mystical one.

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MelissaYAReader
Jul 24, 2017

Twins Stasha and Pearl are part of Mengele's Zoo where he conducts experiments on twins to see how the other is influenced by the changes. When the sisters are separated and believe each other dead, they each seek their own path after being liberated. Stasha, hopes that Pearl still lives, but longs to kill Mengele. Pearl, just seeks to recover and survive. The language in this book is pure poetry. It is beautifully written, which is a stark contrast to the darkness of the tale. Both girls are well drawn and the story is heartbreaking. You can't help but cheer for them and wish them escape from the horrors of Mengele's lab.

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brangwinn
Jul 04, 2017

This was challenging reading for me. Jewish twins are separated from family as they enter into a Nazi concentration camp, but where they are sent is not any better. They become part of Mengale’s human experimentation. Somehow thought she is able to show how even condemned to such cruelty, human forgiveness is even more powerful.

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heavenne
Jun 29, 2017

Bleak and brutal, it's a good read with good character development. The only issue is, it can be a little too poetic and lyrical for my tastes. They're young girls, and although yes, they've had to grow up fast in this situation, the words and their thoughts can be too poetic which is unnecessary. Nevertheless it's still a good book and keeps you on the edge wondering if the character will see each other again, or not.

athompson10 May 18, 2017

Grim and brutal at times, but lyrically written.

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shayshortt
May 05, 2017

Mischling is a Holocaust novel that depicts horror couched in beautifully crafted prose. For some, Konar’s careful wordsmithing will distance them from the narrative, and the atrocities it unveils. For others, the juxtaposition will only serve to make the truth that much more poignant as it explores what it means to come of age in the midst of such a tragedy.

Full review: https://shayshortt.com/2017/05/04/mischling/

So much complex writing with the humanity-like intellectual mindset! I like the narrative on how the twins Stasha and Pearl would turn out in the way that it is. It's like an unforgettable experience you would never want to forget, even though it seems complicated especially it took place near the end of the second world war in Central Europe or something familiar. A coming of age story of experience never told like before!

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tiki50
Mar 16, 2017

Very confusing & hard to read. Would not recommend.

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nancynice
Feb 12, 2017

Mengele proves to be even more evil than I had previously realized. The novel is wonderfully constructed; the main characters beautifully portrayed. The ending was quite a contrast to all the brutality, but, all in all, I rate the book 5 stars! Amazing that a young author could channel this period of horror so vividly.

JCLDebbieL Feb 01, 2017

A novel about the victims of Josef Mengele (a real person) who was a vicious Nazi doctor that performed cruel experiments on those confined to Auschwitz. This book focuses on the bond shared by (fictional) twins, Pearl and Stasha who were tortured by Mengele. I had to skip over paragraphs describing torture that my mind and heart couldn’t handle. Tough read. Beautifully
written.

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shayshortt
May 05, 2017

Because you had no power over the fact that I was born, you took from me what I was born with—the person who was my love, the half that made me entire—and now I am lessened into this dull thing, a divided person who will live forever, wandering in search of some nothing, some nowhere, some no-feeling, to mend my pain.

ellensix Feb 10, 2017

Books had never led me in the wrong direction. It seemed foolish to try to endure without such counsel by my side.

ellensix Feb 10, 2017

Years later I would realize that her sorrow arose from taking care of the children who Uncle claimed for his own. It must have been like stringing a harp for someone who played the harp with a knife or binding a book for someone whose idea of reading is feeding pages to a fire.

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shayshortt
May 05, 2017

Stasha and Pearl Zamorski are twelve-year-old Polish-Jewish twins who arrive at Auschwitz in 1944 with their mother and grandfather, their father already missing and presumed dead at the hands of the Gestapo. Here they are singled out by Dr. Josef Mengele, who would become known to history as the Angel of Death. Inside Mengele’s “Zoo,” he collects genetic oddities, including giants and dwarves, albinos and people with heterochromia iridium, and most especially twins. The inmates of the Zoo receive special privileges including more food, and are allowed to keep their hair and clothes. The price is the terrible experiments carried out upon their bodies, the purpose of which they are never given to understand. How does someone survive the guilt and pain of such an experience, let alone carve out a new existence in the aftermath of liberation?

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