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Heda Margolius Kovaly's steady gaze at the lives caught up in Czechoslovakia's tragic fate under the Nazis and then during the Stalin era illuminates the chaotic life of a nation. Kovaly was deported to concentration camps, escaped from a death march, nearly starved in the postwar years, only to be shattered by her husband's conviction (in the infamous 1952 Slansky trial) and his execution. Resonant with lyricism, this gripping memoir is uplifting even in the midst of horror.
Heda Margolius Kovaly recently retired from the Harvard Law School Library and has returned to the Czech Republic.