Belonging by Nora Krug


Named a Best Book of 2018 by The New York Times Critics, The Boston Globe, NPR, The Minneapolis Star-Tribune, The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Time (Honorable Mention), Library Journal (Best Graphic Novels), and Comics BeatA revelatory, visually stunning graphic memoir by award-winning artist Nora Krug, telling the story of her attempt to confront the hidden truths of her family’s wartime past in Nazi Germany and to comprehend the forces that ha...

Details Belonging

Release DateOct 2nd, 2018
GenreSequential Art, Graphic Novels, History, Autobiography, Memoir, Nonfiction, Comics, Cultural, Germany

Reviews Belonging

  • Manny
    This is an unusual book, which somehow manages to be both lyrical and extremely matter-of-fact. Nora is German, and although she has lived most of her life in the US and was anyway born long after the events in question, she feels horrible guilt about what her country has done. Over six million people were cruelly murdered; surely a large part of the German population knew about it and in some way were involved. After a while, her initially unspe...
  • Melanie (Mel's Bookland Adventures)
    Can I give it an extra star?
  • notgettingenough
    Started yesterday, finished this morning: this is the first adult picture book I've wanted to read, and as anticipated, I couldn't put it down.I suppose you could shelve this in some rather specific way. The 'my grandparents were Nazis' memoir shelf. Or the 'ordinary people in the period 1930-1950 in Nazi Germany' shelf. For me, I'd put it under 'everybody should read this'. It asks all the questions, without coming up with any answers. But keepi...
  • Carrie Templeton
    I am almost overwhelmed at the depth and intensity of this graphic memoir. My husband is a second generation German American, his father was born in Germany shortly before the end of WWII and his mother is of Jewish heritage. As a child, my husband wasn’t taught German and learned very little of his father’s family, never heard stories of the homeland. Reading this book felt like peeking behind an unspoken curtain into some inkling of my fath...
  • Laura
    In "The Germans" episode of Fawlty Towers, Basil is told not to mention the war, but he does, frequently, until the guest break out in tears. At the time, I thought it odd that the germans would be upset about it. As Basil said, they started it.I bring this up, because the author of this story, is one such German, who knows about the war, but it is not talked about, though her father's older brother fought and died in World War II. This memoir of...
  • Elizabeth
    Belonging is an absolutely beautiful memoir full of questions about identity, family and homeland. Nora Krug was born and raised in Germany, in the shadow of World War II. Belonging is a deeply personal memoir about her struggles with German identity, coming to terms with her family history, and exploring the German idea of Heimat, or homeland. Her journey leads her to talking to Holocaust survivors in her new homeland of Brooklyn, traveling with...
  • Geoffrey
    (Note: I received an advanced reader's copy of this book courtesy of NetGalley)Between the real life photos and documents that are mixed with absolutely gorgeous art, and Nora Krug's meticulous documentation of her quest to unravel and understand her family's history, it's impossible to not feel like you were placed in the author's shoes and taken along for every single step of her journey. You will be unsettled by the same questions and worries ...
  • Q
    Belonging by Nora KrugA German Reckons with History and Home. I haven’t rated this yet because I listened to it on audio and still waiting for the graphic novel from library to see the pics/artwork. Nora Krug was the narrator for the audiobook. I really appreciated hearing her voice. Her story. It was a great book. This is a book about a young German woman born a couple generations after WWII and working through her personal shame of being born...
  • Bean
    Must write a detailed review later but I have many, many thoughts.- It seems the author's central motivator is ascertaining what amount of guilt and shame she feels (personally, ancestrally, culturally) is actually hers. Along the way, the actual suffering of Jewish people in WWII (including intergenerational suffering for their descendants, some of whom she interviews) becomes a backdrop. - The illustrations of anti-Semitism make me wonder, who ...
  • Shelly
    Belonging by Nora Krug is a fantastic graphic memoir. It’s a personal story, one about her family, about Germany’s ugly Nazi history, and what it means to be German today. I highly recommend it and it’s so well done inside. Perfect blend of art and text. Just great.
  • Deanna (Deanna Reads Books)
    This review was originally posted on my review blog Deanna Reads BooksThis graphic memoir is a really deep and poignant look at one's self. It's a really heavy topic, but I found it awesome to experience Nora's journey of self-discovery cool to be done in the graphic medium. I also loved that it wasn't a typical graphic novel. The book was drawn as if written in a notebook, and there were even real photos put into it to make it feel more real. On...
  • Hannah
    As a present day German-American woman, Nora Krug struggles with her birth country’s past and the guilt associated with WWII, the Holocaust, and Nazis. In this personal memoir, Krug seeks to find out her family’s involvement with the Nazis and to reconcile her sense of belonging and home, or “Heimat.”Krug writes and illustrates her memoir like a graphic novel or scrapbook. It is filled with drawings, old family photos, letters, and homewo...
  • Heather
    It's not popular to rate this only a 3, but I have to do it. The illustrations throughout were truly interesting and the best part of the book. I really liked that each page was it's own little surprise of images. The writing though... it dragged. It dragged for so long with little to come of it. You know those movies you watch where they just ramble through a day and there is no real 'story'? That's how this book felt. She has guilt, curiosity, ...
  • Molly
    A fascinating memoir of one woman's attempt to understand and connect with her own past, as well as the complicated past of Germany. It's well worth a read.I received access to this title via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
  • Belinda Carvalho
    I read the edition that's called Heimat. 'Heimat' is a nuanced German word meaning not just home but also including notions of belonging, family and where you really come from. This book is marketed as a graphic novel in the same way that family memoirs such as Mouse and Persepolis are but I felt this book transcended this format and is some kind of an important historical document merged with beautiful modified personal family pictures and text ...
  • Deb
    We all Search: for roots, meaning, answers, stories, purpose. Nora Krug’s Belonging is the author’s journey of making her way back to the German towns her parents and relatives are from and learning their stories. It’s about Searching, Finding her own way, figuring out Collective Guilt, following the bread crumbs, hoping they’ll lead her ‘home.’ This ‘graphic memoir’ engaged me from the moment I opened it. Mesmerizing, creative, d...
  • Hans
    This book really hits home for me. With the art-collage memoir, paging through the book is like discovering a lost treasure trove of German artifacts and German experiences--things known to me and things that ring true to stories told and retold.My father was a child in Germany during the war and lost his father (i.e. my Opa) in the war. While his mother, brother and sister remained in Germany, he emigrated to America during his 20s--a bit of ran...
  • Bob
    Set in Karlsruhe, where my German ancestors happened to originate. Nora Krug felt an intense guilt-by-association, from what happened with the nazis. She tried to come to terms with this by digging into the WW-II activities of her grandparents. Not an easy thing to deal with, but she bravely and thoroughly collected the facts.How does someone resolve such a thing? Even though the events happened before you were born, what are you supposed to thin...
  • Sarah
    A German woman comes to terms with her country's past, while trying to determine the meaning of home.German people do not like to go around waving their country's flag or singing their country's national anthem, because they understand the negative connotation of German nationalism. They get that their country murdered many many innocent people. They get that many of their grandparents were culpable in the murdering of those many many people. Lik...
  • Bruce Katz
    I’m not sure how to rate a book like this, what kinds of criteria to use. The author, a German expatriate married to a Jewish husband, has created a strikingly original work — a chimera — of enormous power, grace, and courage. Drawings, photographs, documents, and words are brought together in such a way as to capture the emotional complexity of her quest to discover her family’s lives (and, to a very real extent, the lives of other Germa...
  • Jessica Samuelson
    This was such a stunning book for me. “Stunning” in that it affected me in a way I did not expect.I have read lots of books about WWII—non-fiction, fiction, children’s & YA books, even a couple graphic novels/memoirs. Despite all that though, I had never given much thought to how that time period affects modern Germans. When I thought of post-war Germany at all it was mostly in relation to the Berlin Wall.With Nora as my guide, however, I...
  • Cristina
    This graphic novel was on a list of best books somewhere so I requested the local library purchase it. I love them in part because they have never turned my requests down. It's about a thirty-something German woman living in NYC who feels guilt for her German roots and digs into her ancestry to figure out if she has Nazis in her family tree. I like the concept and she does a thorough job of shaking down all the family members who are still living...
  • Barbara
    This is an amazing book. In a patchwork, a scrapbook of handwritten text, drawings and cartoons, old postcards and photos, original documents from the 1930s and 1940s, Nora Krug pieces together what her "normal German family" never told her - namely, how they behaved during the Nazi period and immediately after the war. Producing this book involved meticulous detective work and unearthing all the things which were never spoken about, finding her ...
  • Vanessa (splitreads)
    2.5. Belonging feels like an innovative and unconventional graphic memoir: Krug's pictures and mixed-media are worth looking through in my opinion. The first third of this book had me hooked - I was invested in learning about the author's family. As she attempted to gather stories and government files, I was waiting for the big reveals alongside her. But, for most of the book, there weren't reveals. Overall, I felt this was a scattered story... t...
  • Abbey
    What a beautiful & sad book. I adore the artistic style that Krug used to tell her story - handwritten text, collaged photographs, old papers and new drawings help tell us about her families' lives in Germany during WWII. The images help the sad history become a little more palatable, making Nazi Germany only slightly less disturbing as Krug, and the reader, try to figure out just which side the family fell on in this dark time in history.Conside...
  • Morris
    I don't think there are enough words to accurately describe how beautiful this graphic novel is. The mix of various diary entries, photographs, various illustrations, and excerpts from propaganda combine to pack an emotional punch. I can't recommend this memoir about growing up German after the horrors of the Nazis enough.This unbiased review is based upon a complimentary copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
  • Sarah
    A beautifully written memoir dealing with the struggle of growing up as a second generation German post WW2; outlining Krug's struggle to identify as a German national whilst fighting her own inherited guilt at the events of the Holocaust. A quick and moving read, enlightening to a different mentality and culture, Krug draws you into her search for answers that are lost in time; highlighted elegantly in a format reminiscent of a family scrapbook.
  • Lisa
    I thought this book was amazing, but it's hard to encapsulate my feelings on it. The author's journey of her feelings and thoughts on her country and her family's history are similarly ambivalent - she's horrified by the possibilities but continues to investigate what happened. As with many of the best histories, she acknowledges the unknowability of much of what she's asking. I enjoyed the mix of the personal and the "historical," as well as the...
  • Dlmrose
  • Anni K. Mars
    Einzigartig und interessant.