Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Thief of Auschwitz by Jon Clinch - A Guest Review

The Thief of Auschwitz by Jon Clinch
Published November 2011 by Create Space Independent Publishing Platform
Source: our copy courtesy of the author in exchange for this review

There are two books by Jon Clinch on my book shelves, Finn and now The Thief of Auschwitz. I bought the first, I requested a review copy of the second, both for me to read. I have yet to read either. Finn was read by my dad and he liked it a lot; now this one was immediately grabbed up by The Big Guy. My impression from what they have each said is that these books need to stay in my house and I need to make time for them.

Author's Summary:

Told in two intertwining narratives, The Thief of Auschwitz takes readers on a dual journey: one into the death camp at Auschwitz with Jacob, Eidel, Max, and Lydia Rosen; the other into the heart of Max himself, now an aged but extremely vital—and outspoken—survivor. Max is a renowned painter, and he’s about to be honored with a retrospective at the National Gallery in Washington. The truth, though, is that he’s been keeping a crucial secret from the art world—indeed from the world at large, and perhaps even from himself—all his life long. The Thief of Auschwitz reveals that secret, along with others that lie in the heart of a family that’s called upon to endure—together and separately—the unendurable.

The Big Guy's Thoughts:

Interesting read.  Wasn't sure I was in the mood to delve into a book about a concentration camp as they are not usually terribly upbeat.  This book however does not dwell on the thousands of bodies in the camp, but rather the people and relationships, in particular the prisoners and the capo or trustees who bully the other residents of the camp. 

While not exactly upbeat and not a happy ending per se, the story is not overwhelming.  The descriptions are interesting and appear accurate to the times with predominately the family and a few others woven into the tale.  The author had a nicely flowing and very believable writing style and I could tell he has written some other good novels as discussed on the back cover. 

Overall a very well written book that I would recommend to anyone over the age of 16, both male and female. 

Thanks for the review, Big Guy - and nothing in it that even made me roll my eyes!


  1. Sounds like one right up my alley! Great review for the Big Guy! :)

  2. Sounds good...I like that it revolves around the relationships within the camps!!

  3. This sounds quite fascinating, and you know this is a topic that never seems to bore me no matter how much I read about it. Great review!

  4. I am always attracted to these books. It sounds like a good book.

  5. This one sounds really good, especially since you say it's not overwhelming. The focus on the relationships sounds fascinating.