The Retreat by Aharon Appelfeld

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Synopsis

The year is 1937. On a remote hilltop some distance from Vienna stands a hotel called The Retreat. Founded by a man who is determined to cleanse himself and his guests of all "Jewish traits," it is a resort of assimilation, with daily activities that include lessons in how to look, talk, act--in short, how to pass--as a gentile. But with Hitler on the march, the possibilities of both assimilation and retreat are quickly fading for the hotel's patrons, men and women who are necessarily--and horrifically--blind to their fate. Mordant, shrewd, and elegantly written, The Retreat is a moving story of people forbidden to retreat from themselves, by the writer whom Irving Howe called "one of the best novelists alive."
 

About Aharon Appelfeld

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Aharon Appelfeld, born in Czernovitz, Bukovina, in 1932, experienced a tortuous childhood. Imprisoned in a German concentration camp at the age of eight, Appelfeld escaped and wandered around the Ukrainian countryside for several years, eventually joining the Russian, and later the Israeli, armies. Later still, he studied philosophy at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The Holocaust had a powerful effect on Appelfeld's life and works. Feelings and emotions associated with the survivors of the Holocaust, such as imminent doom, stunted his personal development, and fear pervaded Appelfeld's writing. "To the Land of the Cattails," "The Healer," and "Writing and the Holocaust" are a few of his many excellent works. Appelfeld taught Hebrew Literature for many years at Ben-Gurion University, Beersheba. His many awards include The Prime Minister's Prize for Creative Writing, two Anne Frank Literary Prizes, and the Israel Prize.
 
Published April 18, 1984 by Dutton Adult. 164 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction