Searching for Schindler

Searching for Schindler

3.8 (514 ratings by Goodreads)
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The extraordinary tale of Oskar Schindler, the Aryan who saved hundreds of Jews in Nazi-occupied Poland, is now legendary, but as Tom Keneally reveals in this absorbing memoir, luck and the dogged persistence of one of 'Schindler's Jews' were vital in bringing it to the world's attention through his Booker Prize-winning novel, SCHINDLER'S ARK and the subsequent film, SCHINDLER'S LIST. Entertaining, inspiring and filled with anecdotes about the many people involved, from the survivors Keneally interviewed to Steven Spielberg and Liam Neeson, Searching for Schindler gives a revealing insight into a writer's mind and the creation of a modern classic. It also traces what happened in the decades after the war to Schindler, his wife, and the people they rescued - including Leopold Pfefferberg, who made it his mission to repay his priceless debt to Schindler. Above all, it sheds renewed light on a fascinatingly flawed man, and an instance of exceptional humanity amid the greatest inhumanity mankind has more

Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 128 x 194 x 26mm | 222.26g
  • Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • Sceptre
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 16pp B&W photos
  • 0340963263
  • 9780340963265
  • 84,088

Review quote

Had I read SEARCHING FOR SCHINDLER before making the film, I may have made it an hour longer. I owe you so much. The world owes you more. Steven Spielberg Keneally is incapable of writing a dull book. This memoir, listed as his 38th publication, is no exception Andrew Riemer, Sydney Morning Herald a fascinating absorbing book, replete with anecdote and a quality of writing that continues to mark Keneally out as one of our finest living authors Heraldshow more

About Thomas Keneally

Thomas Keneally began his writing career in 1964 and has published thirty novels since. They include Schindler's Ark, which won the Booker Prize in 1982 and was subsequently made into the film Schindler's List, and The Chant Of Jimmie Blacksmith, Confederates and Gossip From The Forest, each of which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. His most recent novels are The Daughters Of Mars, which was shortlisted for the Walter Scott Prize in 2013, and Shame and the Captives. He has also written several works of non-fiction, including his memoir Homebush Boy, Searching for Schindler and Australians. He is married with two daughters and lives in more

Review Text

Keneally (A Commonwealth of Thieves: The Improbable Birth of Australia, 2006, etc.) chronicles the conception, birth and rich afterlife of his most celebrated work.The Australian author is a genial, unaffected companion in this leisurely voyage around Schindler's List (1982), which began with a broken briefcase in California. Stopping in a leather-goods store in 1980, Keneally met proprietor Leopold Pfefferberg, who always insisted the author call him Poldek. Learning that his customer was a writer, Poldek told Keneally about Oskar Schindler, who had saved both him and his wife during the Holocaust. He insisted that this story would win Keneally the Nobel Prize and any filmmaker an Oscar. (So far, he has proved half-right.) The author reveals that he was initially reluctant to take on the project, being a non-Jew and a non-European who knew only the basics about World War II, but notes that Poldek insisted these were virtues. Soon, Keneally was caught up in the story, interviewing Holocaust survivors and traveling to Poland to see the remains of the Warsaw ghetto, the camps at Auschwitz and myriad relevant sites. He was intrigued by the moral ambiguity embodied by Schindler, who saved many Jews but also profited from the labor of enslaved people and had, to put it mildly, a relaxed sexual code. Keneally chronicles the publication of the book, which indeed became the bestseller Poldek fiercely believed it would be. In prose so clear it glistens, he describes working on early drafts of the screenplay with Steven Spielberg (who eventually, gently, fired him) and the production of the film, much of which he observed. President Clinton attended the 1993 premiere, and the movie won seven Academy Awards. Keneally's narrative ends sadly, with the deaths of his father and Poldek.An essential companion to the original novel. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

514 ratings
3.8 out of 5 stars
5 24% (123)
4 40% (206)
3 30% (153)
2 5% (24)
1 2% (8)
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