A True Story of the Holocaust
The Gold family find their peaceful idyllic lives shattered when Nazi Germany invades Poland, setting in motion the events that would come to be known as the Holocaust.
It’s 1942, and the Nazis are rounding up the Jews in the small town of Pińczów for transport to the Treblinka death camp. Leib and Hanna Gold feared this day would come, but thought they had more time to develop an escape plan for their family. When Leib leaves to negotiate a hiding place with local farmers, Hanna and their children, Shoshana, Esther, and twelve-year-old David, steal away in the night to find shelter with a family friend. Leib promises to join them in dawn, but when daylight comes, Leib has vanished. Hanna must flee to a safer refuge or she and her children will perish.
So begins a true story of terror, suspense, and deplorable hardship that lasts more than two years. In a place where everyone is afraid, neighbors turn on neighbors, gentiles betray Jews, and Jews victimize each other, hoping to survive the Holocaust. And all the while, the Nazis grow more determined to implement Hitler’s “Final Solution.”
David Gold’s memories of his formative years during World War II are as vivid and
compelling under his niece’s pen as if they happened yesterday. A testament to the human spirit, Hidden Gold will stay with readers long after the last page is turned.
Gr 7 Up– Even though the subject matter is difficult, the portrayal of the characters is dynamic and heartwarming. Readers gain deep insight into Shoshana, the eldest daughter; Esther, her sister; and young David, as each sibling deals with fear and isolation in their own way. Burakowski’s novel, based upon her mother’s experiences growing up during World War II, will spark discussion and likely inspire further research into the Holocaust as well as serve as a springboard for critical examinations relating historical events to current situations around the globe. VERDICT A fine purchase to support curriculum related to World War II and Holocaust studies.
School Library Journal
Burakowski's writing brings us right into the stomach-churning dilemmas and horrific tensions in which her family found themselves. But what makes the story even more compelling, even more electrically shocking to our souls was that it is all true. It all happened.
Through darkness, one can indeed sometimes find a measure of light on which to hold and find a path and walk toward a better future. Burakowski tells us how her family did precisely that. They held tightly to each other and to that small glimmer of light. And they survived to build a better life for themselves.
Mordechai Ben-Dat, former editor of The Canadian Jewish News.
Gripping story of the desperate 26 months, beginning in November 1942, that the four Golds spend hiding in the annex of a barn where they are unable to stand erect. Dependent on the avariciousness of unethical Poles, crawling through sewers, living in filth, infested with lice, toileting with no privacy, fearsomely hungry, fearing death: both risks and the boredom are well-conveyed.
Burakowski was able to collect many personal stories from her surviving family members. These details help give a first-hand immediacy to the descriptions of the struggles and pain that even wealthy Jewish families endured in order to survive the Holocaust. They also paint a portrait of the Golds as a strong resilient family determined to do anything to stay together and keep each other alive. Powerful and moving story.
Quill & Quire
Read it straight for 7 hours. Finally gave up near the end, close to 4 am. I couldn't stop!
Barri Cohen, award winning filmmaker and writer
I read it in one day, I just couldn’t put it down. I found it engaging and factual, with just the right amount of emotional connection without it being too difficult to continue, considering the subject matter. The continued spirit to ‘go on’ came through the pages from the get go, their unwillingness to quit, to stay together and to lean on each other under such adversity was incredible. It is amazing what the human spirit will overcome and their constant sense of hope and triumph resonated strongly.
Sandi McCormick, retired elementary school teacher