All The Pretty Shoes.

Author:Diehn, Andi
Position:Book review

Marika Roth (author); ALL THE PRETTY SHOES; Wyatt-McKenzie Publishing (Autobiography & Memoir) $15.00 ISBN: 9781936214273

Byline: Andi Diehn

There are many memoirs about World War II, each with its own story of atrocities, devastation, and triumph. Memoirs help make history real; names, dates, and events are important, but it's the personal suffering of the people involved that cause readers to feel the human pain woven into nearly every story.

Marika Roth knows about suffering. As a child, she was subjected to negligent relatives and abusive boarding schools while her mother spent time in a sanatorium, dying of tuberculosis. At twelve years old, she and her father were separated forever when the Nazis ordered men and boys to march from the housing in which they thought they were safe. A few days later, she was shot at, along with a crowd of other Jews; only by pretending to be dead did she escape the soldiers. A day later, hiding in the bushes at a park, she witnessed the murder of hundreds of Jews along the banks of the Danube River.

Alone, starving, her hair infested with lice and feet protected from the snow and cold with only newspaper, Roth relied on her fierce spirit and keen resourcefulness to rise above her miserable existence and survive until the next heartache. For even as she found her way out of one horror, another waited for her on a different shore.

One of Roth's many strengths as a writer is her ability to tease the details of her experience to the...

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