The Tattooist of Auschwitz

The incredible story of the Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist and the woman he loved. 
Lale Sokolov is well-dressed, a charmer, a ladies’ man. He is also a Jew. On the first transport from Slovakia to Auschwitz in 1942, Lale immediately stands out to his fellow prisoners. In the camp, he is looked up to, looked out for, and put to work in the privileged position of Tätowierer– the tattooist – to mark his fellow prisoners, forever. One of them is a young woman, Gita, who steals his heart at first glance. 
His life given new purpose, Lale does his best through the struggle and suffering to use his position for good. 
This story, full of beauty and hope, is based on years of interviews author Heather Morris conducted with real-life Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz- Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov. It is heart-wrenching, illuminating, and unforgettable.

December 31, 2018
2 0f 5 stars

I enjoyed the beginning, it read like an historical novel. However, towards the end it read more like an agenda. Then at the end, it seemed almost biographical. When I got to the epilogue, it totally read like a true life story. Get to the disclaimer at the very last page… “…a work of fiction…”
Really confused and a tad bit annoyed. 🙁
Did Lale and Gita REALLY exist or????

The history of bees

In the spirit of Station Eleven and Never Let Me Go, this dazzling and ambitious literary debut follows three generations of beekeepers from the past, present, and future, weaving a spellbinding story of their relationship to the bees, to their children, and to one another against the backdrop of an urgent, global crisis.

England, 1852. William is a biologist and seed merchant who sets out to build a new type of beehive, one that will give both him and his children honor and fame.

United States, 2007. George is a beekeeper fighting an uphill battle against modern farming, but he hopes that his son can be their salvation.

China, 2098. Tao hand paints pollen onto the fruit trees now that the bees have long since disappeared. When Tao’s young son is taken away by the authorities after a tragic accident, she sets out on a grueling journey to find out what happened to him.

Haunting, illuminating, and deftly written, 
The History of Bees joins these three very different narratives into one gripping and thought-provoking story that is just as much about the powerful bond between children and parents as it is about our very relationship to nature and humanity.

January 26, 2018 ~ 4 of 5 stars

The History of Bees Review

A special thank you to NetGalley, and Simon & Schuster for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

A compelling look from three different perspectives, and three different time lines, at how bees play a role in day to day life. There is plenty of mystery and intrigue in this novel to keep the pages turning. The opening lines of the story are beautifully descriptive, and that style of language is carried throughout the book. It invokes a sympathy from the reader for the plight of the characters.

Unfortunately, with my schedule and commitments, I’m a read 10 pages, back up and reread 3 or 4 the next time I get to sit down with it, so the continuity is sometimes lost. Tao’s story was my favourite, and when I reached the end, I felt that hers was the only story clearly summed up. William I lost several chapters before the end, and George disappeared as well. I went back several chapters to reread the ending to see if I missed something. I was more satisfied after my reread, but I still feel William was left to ones imagination more than I would have liked.

Overall, I enjoyed the book, its subject matter and its characters.

I will definitely read more from Maja Lunde!