Based on the experience of real-life Auschwitz prisoner Dita Kraus, the award-winning The Librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe is the incredible story of a girl who risked her life to keep the magic of books alive during the Holocaust. This edition includes a Q&A with Dita Kraus and discussion questions.
As a young girl, Dita is imprisoned by the Nazis at Auschwitz. Taken from her home in Prague in 1939, Dita does her best to adjust to the constant terror of her new reality. But even amidst horror, human strength and ingenuity persevere. When Jewish leader Fredy Hirsch entrusts Dita with eight precious volumes the prisoners have managed to sneak into the camp, She embraces the responsibility—and so becomes the librarian of Auschwitz.
From one of the darkest chapters in history comes this extraordinary story of courage and hope.
About the Author
Antonio Iturbe is a novelist and journalist. He interviewed Dita Kraus, the real-life librarian of Auschwitz, for The Librarian of Auschwitz.
Lilit Thwaites is an award-winning literary translator. After thirty years as an academic at La Trobe University in Australia, she retired from teaching and now focuses primarily on her ongoing translation and research projects.
"[A]n unforgettable, heartbreaking novel." —Publishers Weekly, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz
"Like Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief, it’s a sophisticated novel with mature themes, delivering an emotionally searing reading experience. An important novel that will stand with other powerful testaments from the Holocaust era." —Booklist, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz
"This novel is one that could easily be recommended or taught alongside Elie Wiesel’s Night and The Diary of Anne Frank and a text that, once read, will never be forgotten. VERDICT A hauntingly authentic Holocaust retelling; a must for YA collections." —School Library Journal, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz
"Though no punches are pulled about the unimaginable atrocity of the death camps, a life-affirming history." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz
"The Librarian of Auschwitz is a heartbreaking and ultimately inspiring work of art." —Shelf Awareness, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz
"Iturbe’s remarkable account uses an immediate present tense to immerse readers in Dita’s story as she goes about what constitutes daily life in Auschwitz, all the while risking everything to distribute and hide the library’s books." —The Horn Book, starred review, on The Librarian of Auschwitz