Archive for November, 2012

Please join us for the book launch party for Needle in the Bone: How a Holocaust Survivor and Polish Resistance Fighter Beat the Odds & Found Each Other at 7 p.m., Sat., Dec. 15th at the Lawrence Jewish Community Congregation, 917 Highland Dr. (one block east of 9th and Iowa).

Jarek Piekalkiewicz and Jane Frydman will be there to share some stories, I have a fascinating slide show of both families through the war and over the years, and because it’s Hanukkah, we’ll be lighting menorahs and celebrating the miracle of survival against the odds and across time.

The Raven Bookstore will also be selling books, and you can get yours signed by Jarek as well as me. Plus, we’ll have luscious delights to eat and lots of fellowship to bask in on a winter’s night.

Hanukkah is doubly-significant because the final scene of the book takes place during this holiday. Here’s the excerpt:

I remember Hannukah a few years ago, Jarek standing beside me, saying, “You know, the candle lighting was very beautiful.” He, Maura who seemed too alive to ever vanish, and 45 other people were jammed into our living room, kitchen, and dining room for our annual Hanukkah party.

“You mean the menorah lighting? Yes, it’s lovely.”

“When I see all those candles lit, it makes me cry, but not tears of sadness. It just makes me so happy.”

I put my arm around him as Lou and two of his leggy granddaughters wave and head toward their coats, Rick telling me to keep the cookies he brought.

“Because we’re all still here?” I ask Jarek.

“Yes,” he says. I kiss him on the cheek as Maura comes toward us, her arms outstretched, her face radiant.

“It’s so good to have the lads here together,” she says, while I nod in agreement.

The miracle isn’t just that they survived. The miracle is how they found a way to live with courage, laughter, and joy, while carrying those needles in the bone.