My Innocent Absence: Tales From a Nomadic Life

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9781906413675: My Innocent Absence: Tales From a Nomadic Life

When five-year-old Miriam boards the Serpia Pinto in 1941, she is unaware that she and her mother Kate are escaping the roundups, separations and final extermination camps. She is leaving a world of Communists and Nazis, Republicans and Fascists, collaborators and resistance fighters, Jews and stateless refugees. But sometimes the mere fact of survival is not enough. As adolescence approaches, Miriam faces a new challenge as her mother turns from guardian and protector to her strongest critic. The constant flight and upheaval that once united them now seems to drive them apart. After a failed reconciliation with Miriam's father, Kate moves again, this time to New Zealand. By the age of twelve Miriam has fled two wars and lived on three continents. Gradually understanding the horror of the Holocaust and its long shadow, she begins to train as a doctor, when only sixteen: the preservation of life and alleviation of pain becomes the focus of her professional career. She returns to Europe, settles in London and marries a German artist, former assistant to Oscar Kokoschka - the start of yet more challenging and enriching experiences on her journey from a fragmented start to wholeness.

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Miriam Frank
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