Nine Suitcases by Béla Zsolt

Nine Suitcases

Suppressed by the Communists for nearly forty years and never before published in English, Nine Suitcases is one of the first—and greatest—memoirs of the Holocaust ever written. Originally published in Hungary in weekly installments starting in 1946, it tells the harrowing story of Béla Zsolt’s experiences in the ghetto and as a forced laborer in the Ukraine. It gives not only a rare insight into Hungarian fascism, but also a shocking expo...

Details Nine Suitcases

TitleNine Suitcases
Release DateNov 9th, 2004
GenreWorld War II, Holocaust, Nonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, History, Biography, War

Reviews Nine Suitcases

  • Buck
    Near the beginning of Nine Suitcases, Béla Zsolt recalls meeting some Jewish prostitutes from a Nazi ‘field brothel’ beside a railway track in Poland. One girl asks him and his companions if they’re Jews: “You’re going to kick the bucket like us,” she warns them. Zsolt goes on:Another girl, in the last stages of pregnancy, who was carrying some mouldy bread in a music case, asked us: ‘Have you got any German books? I’ve just fini...
  • Meaghan
    I don't know if I'd call this one of the greatest Holocaust memoirs like it says on the cover blurb, but it is good, and it is significant because it's definitely one of the earliest memoirs. It was originally published in serial form in 1946, only a year after the war ended, but it was suppressed by the Communists and languished in obscurity after that. It wasn't translated into English until recently.The author, Bela Zsolt, was the stepfather o...
  • Aubrey
    The bravery of this man. It's near impossible to comprehend how he was able to devote his life to the betterment of his beloved country and suffer such horrors as compensation. He didn't even make it to the camps, you know. He didn't need to in order to endure the worst of the atrocities that WWII had to offer to mankind. And then he was able to recount it in the most minute detail, but wasn't able to finish writing it. The irony of it all is sic...
  • PDXReader
    I'm not sure why I've never heard of this author or his works. Nine Suitcases: A Memoir is every bit as heart-breaking, horrific and important as the works of Holocaust survivors Elie Wiesel and Primo Levy. It's nothing short of amazing, and perhaps the best written account out there of what it was like to be a Hungarian Jew during WWII (without doubt the best I've encountered). If you have any interest at all in Holocaust literature, you really ...
  • Katie Beeman
    One of the most moving books I have read because of its unfiltered honesty of the holocaust. It isn't pretty, touching, or inspiring, it is merely an account of human evil. I must read because of its significance to our world and understanding our past. It isn't warm and fuzzy account, and the things that happened are so horrifying because you know they are real. Very eye openning and somewhat disturbing.
  • Susan Emmet
    Finished this remarkable book.Don't know where I found it, but it turned up in our library while I was culling books to give away.Struck by the detailing, the indictment of victims and perpetrators.I've never read anything in Holocaust rememberings like this book.Unlike his and his wife Agnes' families, Zsolt avoided Auschwitz, but suffered immeasurably in his Hungarian ghetto and in the Ukraine where he was deported to forced labor as a gravedig...
  • Kelly Mahaney
    This was a great book on the Holocaust, one of the best I have ever read. Originally published in Hungary in weekly installments starting in 1946, it tells the story of Béla Zsolt’s experiences in the ghetto and as a forced laborer in the Ukraine. It gives one a look at Hungarian fascism and also a shocking expose to the cruelty, indifference, selfishness, cowardice and betrayal of which human beings—the victims no less than the perpetrators...
  • Tress Huntley
    A second reading felt necessary after finishing The Invisible Bridge. Words don't suffice for how frightening and honest this is. The worst thing about it is it's true. Should be required reading.
  • Sandra
    Es de los primeros testimonios del holocausto y su autor era escritor, por tanto, es un relato bien escrito y sin filtro editorial. Además, la odisea de este hombre en la Segunda Guerra Mundial fue diferente porque no estuvo en un campo de concentración. La mejor parte y por lo que merece la pena todo lo demás, es la parte del tren en la que él, su mujer y una amiga viajan, en el 44, a Budapest. Con todo lo que había visto ya, es capaz de na...
  • Wayne Jones
    Picked this book up in a bookstore in Budapest after visiting the Holocaust Museum not really knowing what to expect but seeking an account of someone who lived through the experience rather than a historian's view of events. It makes for grim reading but it is well written as you would expect from a journalist. Personally I am glad I read the book but feel a reader needs to be 'ready' to read the accounts of the cruelty and misery that people ar...