I Survived and Loved Surviving the Angel of Death

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Mary Eleanor Tezak writes, Guinea pigs are used for all sorts of things; some people have them as pets while scientists use them in experiments.

Guinea pigs are used for all sorts of things; some people have them as pets while scientists use them in experiments. How would you like to be a guinea pig? You are fed one type of food while your friend is fed another. Will it change the way you look? That is an everyday experiment used on guinea pigs. In the book: Surviving the Angel of Death: the story of a Mengele Twin in Auschwitz one girl tells of her experience and struggle for survival in the Auschwitz concentration camp. During World War II people who practiced Judaism were persecuted by a man named Adolph Hitler and his military forces. In the early 1940’s Hitler began to put Jewish people in to places called concentration camps. Most of the time, people there were killed in gas chambers. If you were strong enough you worked without pay instead of being killed. Still others were put in to science experiments under a man named Dr. Josef Mengele. These experiments weren’t like the ones you perform in science class. Mengele kept all twins, gypsies, giants, and dwarfs in a separate part of the camp and tried to make a great scientific discovery while making several thousand people suffer immensely. These experiments sometimes hurt them permanently. I think the co-author, Eva, did an excellent job of telling her story in detail. At some places, the authors did write phrases such as, “I found out later that…” this confused me a little bit because it wasn’t in chronological order. However, when one subject was a little monotonous, the author didn’t spend a long time on it, instead she spent a long time on the parts that you wanted to know about. Mengele’s goal was to find out the secrets to why they were born this way. The main character, Eva, and her twin, Miriam, are separated from heir family, tattooed with a number like a cattle brand, and sent to live with around 3,000 other twins in barracks. During the whole story Eva never gives up. She pushes her frail, malnourished body to the max to fight for survival. This pays off; she is alive today and helped write this book. Her sister Miriam died at the age of sixty-five of an injection given to her in the camp at the age of 10 that stopped her kidney growth. Today it is very hard to imagine what it would be like living in that camp, people injecting you in the wrist 3 times a week and measuring and examining you in a freezing cold room for hours on end. I really liked this book. It opened my eyes to the cruelty of Adolph Hitler. It makes you want to be better and never treat anyone as cruelly as Adolph Hitler and the Nazis did. I also learned to appreciate the free country we live in today. Though I would suggest this book to everyone, I would not suggest reading it until you are in at least sixth grade. It’s a very tough read because of everything that happens to her. This book definitely teaches you a lesson and gives you a lot of history. Next time you’re at the library or a bookstore, keep Surviving the Angel of Death: the Story of a Mengele Twin in Auschwitz on your list.

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