Ian Buruma’s maternal grandparents were born into the same world: children of German-Jewish emigre stockbrokers living in London. But at the demand of his parents, Ian’s grandfather, the dutiful son, broke up with his fiancee by letter just before leaving for the Western Front during World War One, where he served as a stretcher bearer in the Battle of the Somme. It was the first great shock their romance would suffer, but their love would survive it. Bernard (‘Bun’) and Winifred (‘Win’) Schlesinger were married for more than sixty years, but the heart of their story lies within the span of the two world wars. This is the moving story of an assimilated Jewish family in unhappy times. With the outbreak of war in 1939, the Schlesingers began to face the real prospect that the Nazis could defeat England and place their family’s survival in question. Nonetheless, they helped twelve Jewish children escape from Nazi Germany and gave them new lives in Britain. Drawn into service during World War Two, Bun was stationed in India as a military doctor. No matter what else befell them, Win and Bernard sustained a remarkably consistent stream of letters back and forth between England and India, averaging a letter every other day, and filling their correspondence with vivid accounts of wartime activity. Back home, Win struggled through wartime privation and the Blitz to hold her family together. Through courage and imagination, she cast a spell over her children that kept fear and horror at bay. Their Promised Land is Ian Buruma’s spellbinding homage to the sustaining power of a family’s love and devotion through very dark days.
Op werkdagen voor 14.00 besteld, volgende werkdag in huis (NL)