The Tattooist of Auschwitz

The Tattooist of Auschwitz

Audiobook CD - 2018
Average Rating:
Rate this:

The Tattooist of Auschwitz is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews, who survived Auschwitz and eventually made their home in Australia. In that terrible place, Lale was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival-literally scratching numbers into his fellow victims' arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust. Lale used the infinitesimal freedom of movement that this position awarded him to exchange jewels and money taken from murdered Jews for food to keep others alive. If he had been caught he would have been killed; many owed him their survival.

There have been many books about the Holocaust-and there will be many more. What makes this one so memorable is Lale Sokolov's incredible zest for life. He understood exactly what was in store for him and his fellow prisoners and he was determined to survive-not just to survive, but to leave the camp with his dignity and integrity intact, to live his life to the full. Terrible though this story is, it is also a story of hope and of courage. It is also-almost unbelievably-a love story.

Waiting in line to be tattooed, terrified and shaking, was a young girl. For Lale-a dandy, a jack-the-lad, a bit of a chancer-it was love at first sight, and he determined not only to survive himself but to ensure that Gita did, too. His story-their story-will make you weep, but you will also find it uplifting. It shows the very best of humanity in the very worst of circumstances.

Like many survivors, Lale and Gita told few people their story after the war. They eventually made their way to Australia, where they raised a son and had a successful life. But when Gita died, Lale felt he could no longer carry the burden of their past alone. He chose to tell his story.

Publisher: New York, NY : Harper Audio, [2018]
Copyright Date: ℗2018
ISBN: 9781982554699
Branch Call Number: TB FIC MORRI
Characteristics: 6 audio discs (7 hr., 30 min.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
audio file,CD audio
Additional Contributors: Armitage, Richard 1971-


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Feb 04, 2019

I'm thankful for the opportunity to listen to this audiobook. The subject matter is so painful, I don't think I would have gotten through the story if I'd tried to read it in print. These are horrors that everyone needs to know about. It appalls me to read headlines that 50% of high school students have never heard of the holocaust. It is incredible that Heather Morris was able to uncover this true story and give it such beautiful treatment to bring it to the masses. Highly recommended.

ArapahoeChristineS Nov 02, 2018

I'm torn about how to rate this. The story is, of course, painful, but also hopeful because there are some truly amazing people out there. The story was interesting, but I didn't care for the writing. I felt the characters were one dimensional, the good guys were too sugary good. There was no internal tensions or struggling with any of them. The main character was pure goodness and selflessness, which rings a false to me. Real people grapple with things, it doesn't make them bad, especially when they ultimately do the right thing. I think showing this struggle would've made it a richer book. BUT THEN... I found out at end that this was based on a true story; I was astounded. I am so glad there are people out there like Lale! I'm glad I read this, but I feel the story would've been better served by a different writer who developed some of the characters more.

ArapahoeKati Oct 12, 2018

Do yourself a favor and listen to the audiobook read by Richard Armitage. He lent such grace and compassion to the voices of the characters. And it's based on a true story. If you think you've read all you can about the Holocaust, I encourage you to pick this up.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at APL

To Top