Summary: When Katrina Shawver met the eighty-five year old Henry Zguda, he possessed an exceptional memory, a surprising cache of original documents and photos, and a knack for meeting the right people at the right time.
The BookViral Review: Powerful and riveting Shawver’s Holocaust biography casts a haunting and uninterrupted spell over her readers as she takes them on a harrowing journey into the darkest moments of the last century. A time and place that will forever be engrained in the annals of history it’s flawlessly written with a timely clarity which proves wholly enthralling throughout but as with any biography of note, it’s the subject we are first and foremost drawn to. With lucid and acerbic prose Shawver gives voice to Henry Zguda’s innermost thoughts and memories and the result proves quite remarkable. Conveying a prevailing sense of immediacy we come to see events as they unfolded through Henry’s eyes. A unique perspective that weaves moral choices, immoral certainties, the worst of human nature and a timeless lesson in resilience. Auschwitz and Buchenwald have been written about extensively and Henry’s story is of course just one of million’s but through Shawver’s burgeoning friendship with him, extensive research and travel to Poland Shawver delivers a biography that proves not only factual but incredibly inspiring with Zguda reminding us how important it is to embrace life and make every moment count.
An extraordinarily powerful biography, HENRY: A Polish Swimmer’s True Story of Friendship from Auschwitz to America is recommended without reservation.