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Our heroine's daughter is one of the victims and dies from the whip. Nonetheless she is rescued from field work and beatings and being treated like an animal by the plantation owner, the slaver, who is convinced she is really white. He falls in love with her and she with him. Because of her love for him, she sees the light. She sees that giving up her black roots forever and 'converting' into a full-time white person is really is the right way to go and God wants it so now they can go to the same church and get married.
What would you think of this plot? That it was unbelievably unlikely, that it was an insult to Blacks, that it was the hero was no hero? That it was in two words, fucking sick? So why are all these people 5-starring it because the Black girl is a Jewish girl who is blonde and blue-eyed ie looks like the Aryan idea of beauty and falls in love with an SS commandante and converts to Christianity? All the rest is rant and quotes and virtual axe-murdering of other people's reviews. It is a review of the reviews. I'm in unaccustomed troll mode. I want to be an axe murderer of reviews that give this book 5 stars After the war they all said, "we were just following orders" to kick, kill, starve, wound, gas and turn into soap and lampshades fellow human beings Jews.
Fellow GR author review. A review that goes on about "the Jewish race". This is sick beyond sick. To excuse the Holocaust in this way. Evangelicals can go too far sometimes. Both had their faults, but both were able to move past those as they began to love and to trust one another and God again". How can you equate the 'faults' of an SS commandante with that of a Jewish woman trying to save her own life? Another evangelical with a freebie. The worst by far the worst one of all was the reviewer who wrote that it really showed her what it was like to be a Jew. I can only shake my head at that, it's almost evil in it's willful ignorance.
I doubt if any of us, Jewish or not, can imagine what it was like to be in a concentration camp and watching people being murdered, tortured and dying in front of your eyes to be thrown on to piles of rotting bodies or burned, emitting the smell of roasting flesh that repulsed those who smelt it forever well not the nearby German villages, who had "no idea" at all, they said.
For Such a Time
How could anyone have written a book like this? How could a Christian publisher put aside their Christianity and empathy to publish it? How could anyone just think it was a historical romance and none the worse for that? Rose Lerner has the best review of this vile story that would appeal to Read this fantastic review here. He insists that we "kill me if I ever think of reading this! Chocoholic's response to this 'smear campaign'. There are more links at the bottom of that blistering reply. This link is extremely sick.
Kate Breslin's publishing company with her approval obviously using the gates of Auschwitz to promote the book. View all 72 comments. Aug 04, Katherine Locke rated it did not like it Shelves: A Nazi romance is not okay. I don't really understand how this was published. No one said, "This is really not okay? Nazis killed more people than you can imagine. Than you have ever seen standing in one place. They killed more people than live in New York City. And they were not alone.
They did not appear out of nowhere. There was a pervasive culture of Anti-Semitism. When you write, you need to decide whose story is most important. And this author chose HER story. Not her character's, but HER story. It'd be one thing if this just existed and we could all say, "That's pretty terrible" but it's worse that it was published by a publisher, and nominated for awards, and you people think it's GOOD.
Stare at those piles of shoes. Listen to the stories. Look at the system, violent, dehumanizing destruction of babies, and children, of mothers and daughters, of fathers and sons, aunts and uncles, grandparents, great grandparents, entire families erased into smoke. Their bodies are in mass graves in the forests of Poland and Hungary and Austria and Germany and they will never be found. They will never be remembered because there is no one left who knew who they were. Because people like the hero of this story killed them.
Looked at them, and killed them. And that is what you are considering to be Moral Christian Behavior. That is what you believe is redeemable. I just really don't. You are all lucky that your culture and your religion have not been fundamentally changed and formed by thousands of years of genocide against you. The only way you could write this and read this and think this is good is if you've never carried the collective burden of millions and millions of deaths in your blood and in your bones.
View all 19 comments. Jan 14, Galaxylaughing rated it did not like it Recommends it for: It takes a certain, truly despicable, type of person to write a romance between a Jew and a Nazi. I, unfortunately, only read the first part of the back cover, the part about "Aryan-looking Jew ends up secretary to Nazi and is forced to stand by as her own people are sent to Auschwitz. Oh, boy, I sure should have read that middle part. I did not, going into this, know that i It takes a certain, truly despicable, type of person to write a romance between a Jew and a Nazi.
I did not, going into this, know that it was Christian book what moron's like, oh yeah, story of Esther? The book is in third-person, narrated by Stella Muller.
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Even though her actual name is Hadassah Benjamin. Anyway, she has fake papers that say she's not Jewish, but she gets in a fight with a Gestapo man who gets a wee bit intimate with her at a train station, and gets herself labeled "Jew" and packed off to Dachau. Where she is miraculously saved by the Nazi Colonel Aric, who firmly believes she's an Aryan that the idiotic Gestapo mistook for a Jew. So, because she's pretty and he has a crush, he saves her from the firing squad and carts her off to the concentration camp Theresienstadt to be his secretary.
Oh, you don't think so? Well Kate Breslin does! Aric is portrayed as Misunderstood Man. You know how when women make posts about men treating them shitty and some asshole comes along and says "not all men"? Well, this book is all about Not All Nazis. A lack of cruelty is not the same thing as kindness. So, you might wonder, what "good things" as Aric done?
Well, 1 one of the prisoners a 10 year old tried to steal some potatoes and so one of the SS guys lopped one of the kid's ears. Aric decided to make the kid his houseboy. Yeah that's, that's about it. Wow, what a hero. How did someone so noble end up a Nazi? How did someone with even his pathetic level of decency get the position of SS colonel at Theresienstadt??
Himmler would never let that shit happen. The SS is the creme of the crop. They're the most rabid Nazi zealots of the lot. They have to prove their 'pure' Aryan ancestry going back like years. They fully and completely believe in the Nazi ideology. They get relieved of their position and treated like traitor's to the Reich. If Aric had even a sliver of humanity within him, he would not be in the SS. She was Stella's best friend back before Stella got sent to Dachau.
Marta, despite otherwise sounding like a decent person, apparently constantly tried to get Stella to convert to Christianity. And now, in the Colonel's house at Theresienstadt, there's a Bible in Stella's bedside table. The way the writing is leaning, it makes me very nervous that the author's going to have Stella convert. Then there's her vague-at-best understanding of Judaism.
She described challah as the bread God gave the Jews during the 40 years in the desert, when, actually, he gave them manna. Then there's that kid, the houseboy Aric saved, who, upon hearing one of Stella's friends possibly child or younger sister , died in Dachau, says "Then she's in heaven. Heaven and Hell are Christian concepts. I don't even know what to make of this shitshow. The implication seems to be that 'hey guys, the Nazis weren't actually that bad' which then, of course, implies the Holocaust was somehow justified, because you can't argue the people who committed it weren't that bad without taking the horror out of the act itself.
Or possibly the implication is that Jews who don't "look Jewish" aren't Jews???
I don't know, but it's clearly saying that Aryan-looking Stella and her Nazi love interest are good. This isn't Schindler's List, okay. This isn't, 'Nazi party member starts to realize Jews are people too and goes out to try and save as many as he can, risking his own skin in the process. One of the guards, Hermann, catches him staring out towards Aric's house and not working. To stop Hermann from dragging him off to Theresianstadt's "Little House" aka probably a torture chamber , 'Mordy' gives Hermann the Grand Cross he received for his actions in WW1, which Mordy presumably smuggled in via his butt since, you know, prisoners are strip-searched.
Mordy tells Hermann he found it, and, it being worth a lot, Hermann takes the bribe. What's weird is Hermann's reaction to Mordy. Hermann's not that stupid, he figures out the Grand Cross must have been awarded to Mordecai. And instead of having the reaction you'd expect from a Nazi SS Death's Head member aka ew gross that's disgusting how could such a prestigious award be given to this jew scum?
I then proceeded to head over to Goodreads, where the "genres" section helpfully informed me that this piece of shit is Christian Historical Fiction and Historical Romance. View all 15 comments. Aug 17, Julio Genao marked it as no. View all 31 comments. Aug 17, Dawn rated it it was amazing. For Such A Time was the very last book I read before giving birth to my firstborn at the end of March Kate Breslin wasn't anyone I'd ever heard of before, but once I saw her book cover advertised and read the description of the novel, I knew I needed to read it.
And believe it or not, the hero is actually a Nazi For Such A Time was the very last book I read before giving birth to my firstborn at the end of March And believe it or not, the hero is actually a Nazi officer in charge of sending Jews from his concentration camp to Auschwitz. This simply exemplifies how God's grace is sufficient for even the worst sinner. No one is beyond God's grace. I read the first few chapters of For Such a Time online at a website called Scribd. I seriously did not want to stop reading. I was hooked and I knew I needed to find a way to get my hands on the book so I could finish it.
Fortunately, I was offered a copy soon after and basically devoured it the day it came in the mail. I don't think there was anything I didn't like about this book--which doesn't usually happen. It's written so deeply I could hardly remember from when I read those first chapters whether it was written in third person or first person POV. The characterization of Stella was so flawless I loved how the author took such a moving story from the Bible and rewrote it into another time.
View all 5 comments. Aug 05, Christina rated it did not like it Shelves: Struggling to understand how a novel that features a Jewish woman in a concentration camp falling in love with a Nazi commander is getting so many accolades. Maybe it's well-written--I'll never find out--but this very concept is so offensive it's unbelievable. The fact that so many people--the author, the publisher, readers, RWA judges--found this acceptable baffles me. Aug 06, Sophie rated it did not like it Shelves: A romance between a Nazi and a Jew, where the Jew ends up converting to Christianity at the end.
This Jewish woman will NOT be reading this book. Mar 15, Regina Jennings rated it it was amazing Shelves: When Stella is unexpectedly snatched from a concentration camp she fears the worst. Why would a SS Kommandant move her to his private residence? Aric von Schmidt, a decorated soldier, knows how to set his opinions and emotions aside for the glory of the Fatherland. Nazis were the most evil people ever. They tried to commit genocide. Remember why Esther had to hide that she was a Jew? Do some of those details get lost in the glamour of the beauty pageant scene?
The drama becomes fresh again, shocking us with the relationships Esther had to maintain, and the strength that was required of her. The romance is difficult and complicated, yet Breslin wrote it so well that I still understood why Stella and Aric needed each other. So I highly recommend this book on its own merits. Plot, characters, setting, romance—every standard is met. View all 9 comments. Aug 07, Nalnac rated it did not like it Shelves: This is not about -censorship- This is about a "book's subject matter to be so tasteless and offensive that it should not be considered suitable to win Romance's top award.
You finally deign us with words. Your poor excuse of statement, is not an apology to the readers You have obviously missed the point, offending us with your blindness once again. Jul 24, Marika rated it did not like it Recommends it for: I thought using the story of Esther would make a moving read in a Holocaust setting. I don't have a problem with the idea of a Jew and Nazi having a love story if it is done well. After all, it is ignorant to believe all members of the Nazi party hated and murdered Jews; there are many true stories of resistance within members of the party.
What bothered me was how ridiculous this specifi I thought using the story of Esther would make a moving read in a Holocaust setting. What bothered me was how ridiculous this specific plot is. Aric basically falls instantly in love with this emaciated prisoner about to get shot and helps her escape so he can play with his fanciful crush. Second of all, for a Jew to be battling conflicting romantic emotions within the first day and week of meeting a Nazi camp commander after having gone through the horrors of 4-ish years of WWII and the hellish experience of Dachau, is also incredibly nonsensical, disturbing, and quite frankly, very insulting.
The book of Esther is a story of God and His justice, goodness, provision, and sovereignty. Xerxes and Esther did not have this grand Love. The man had a harem of women, temporarily liked Esther the most, and if you read commentaries from trusted scholars, they agree that Esther was later deposed as queen and possibly murdered after the events described in the Bible.
God put them together and used the political marriage to save His people. The author's note at the end was also ridiculous. Inventing history to make it more "romantic" or "Christian" or "happy" or whatever, is incredibly offensive and insulting to the millions that were murdered and the survivors. On behalf of us Christians who aren't anti-Semitic, I want to say that I'm so sorry this book exists.
Another reviewer mentioned this and I will reiterate it: This is a twisted fantasy romance novel that has no real grounds in reality. Aug 05, Joanie rated it did not like it. How can a premise like this for a book be okay? And to be nominated for an award? View all 7 comments. Mar 30, Emma rated it it was ok. So I picked this one up thinking it was a straightforward historical. And the concept really intrigued me.
Esther's story has always been my favourite and I could see how applying that conceit to WWII could be interesting IF treated really delicately and thoughtfully, so heck, why not? But enough about the book's treatment of the Jewish and Christian faiths made me so uncomfortable by a third of the way into the book that I had to stop and look it up and, woop, there it is. I will give the author credit for trying.
The actual writing is decent and there's enough action and suspense that in another context, I would probably really like it. But at no point does it rise past the self-imposed limitations of the genre. The chapter headings from the Book of Esther were incredibly intrusive--I was being reminded every five pages that this was a biblical adaptation: And I'm speaking as a Catholic-raised gal myself, I don't want to co-opt whatever Jewish readers might think of this book, but personally, turning a Christian bible into Hadassah's touchstone and bringing back the metaphor of Christ's sacrifice again and again struck me as deeply disrespectful of her own faith.
Though, thank God, we didn't get a conversion at the end, which I was genuinely afraid of. I imagine people who read inspirational historicals will like this book. Like I said, on a technical and plotting level, the author succeeds just fine. But at no point does it let me forget that it's an inspirational historical; there just wasn't enough for a mainstream secular reader like me to latch onto. Aug 12, Kathryn added it Shelves: Apart from the wildly, sickeningly offensive theme of this novel, just looking at the names of the main characters is extremely off-putting to me, and makes me wonder how much research the author can possibly have done.
Umlauts matter; you can't just leave them off. It's like missing out a letter and calling your heroine Stella Smth.
Neither is Stella, an extremely rare name in Germany whatever the time period. It would be pronounced 'shtella' and sounds like you're trying to say the word 'stellen', 'to put'. And 'Aric von Schmidt'? Sounds exactly like the kind of absurdly non-German name someone who hasn't researched properly would think sounds like a plausible German name, but completely isn't. Schmidt is one of the two or three most common surnames in Germany, von is the aristocratic prefix meaning 'of'.
Aric is just freaking weird. I'm typing this sitting literally round the corner from a memorial which now stands on the site where the main synagogue of this German city used to be, which was destroyed on Kristallnacht in November Then, the Jewish population of the city was By the end of the Second World War six and a half years later, only 58 of them were still alive. Also near here, just a few minutes on foot, is a house with a plaque on it stating that the house once belonged to a Jewish couple murdered in Auschwitz in Years ago I lived for some months in a small town in Poland, also just a few minutes' walk from the square where in the Jewish population of the town - those still alive after the starvation and the forced labour and the shooting into mass graves and all the rest - were rounded up and sent to the death camp of Treblinka.
Not one of them survived. I've spent quite a bit of time in Krakow, which in had at least 70, Jewish inhabitants and now has barely This matters to me. It matters more than I can express. Fiction set during the Holocaust, even fiction where a Jewish prisoner has a relationship with an SS guard, can be done, of course it can, but it needs to be done a hell of a lot more sensitively than this revolting 'Gosh, I think I'll convert to the religion of the persecutors of my people!
I literally feel sick. View all 8 comments. I am an inspie reader. After three close reads and a bit of research, I believe this book fails its intended audience and its sub-genre of religious fiction. If you mess with — or ignore — the basic elements of the original story, you change the outcome. If you mess with — or ignore — the basic elements of the original story, you change the meaning and the impact. Never acceptable in a retelling of a Bible story.
I feel like I should apologize to everyone for this. I am very disturbed that book people I felt a spiritual affinity with could possibly think the premise of this story was acceptable. I should have requested it and read it and reviewed it before it won all the awards and the controversy erupted. I decided to put my own self-righteousness to the test. And in more ways, I feel unworthy. I would have hidden them all in my basement and thrown myself in front of Gestapo bullets to save them. We all want there to BE heroes. Americans are so obviously the heroes of WWII.
Without us, Hitler would have won, right? This is really deeply embedded in western culture. And can, I think, genuinely be seen as a subtle and pernicious form of anti-Semitism. I truly think her intentions were good, and she clearly made an attempt to treat the subject with what she felt was heartfelt respect. Yes, the horrors are mentioned explicitly and prominently in the novel.
But the scenes came across as deliberately paced and placed for shock value, instead of an integral part of the story. To borrow from another review,we need stories about the Holocaust. And you know what, Kate Breslin and Bethany House? That last bit deserved the extra bold and italics. But I am glad I read it, because I am learning so much.
Our epic discussion has lead me to research anything I can get my hands on about Theresienstadt and the Book of Esther. Every time I glance at the book and our discussion and my growing list of bookmarks, I have more and more and more questions. And in a disturbing way, reading this book has made me a better Christian.
Aug 10, Roseanna White rated it it was amazing. If the beautiful story of Esther had taken place during WWII instead of the days of Persia, it may have looked like this.
Breslin tells a tale of a young Jewish woman singled out of a concentration camp when her inner strength and promise of beauty captures the attention of a Nazi officer. He whisks her out of that life of hardship and employs her as his secretary, intrigued and attracted That she will never forgive it when she learns the role If the beautiful story of Esther had taken place during WWII instead of the days of Persia, it may have looked like this.
That she will never forgive it when she learns the role he must play in the Final Solution. The question is--can he ever forgive himself after she opens his eyes to the truth of her people's plight? This is a tale that paints vividly the horrors of life for the Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe. It's a tale that shows that sometimes the heart leads us toward people logic says we should hate.
It's a tale that reminds us that sometimes God turns a heart of stone back into a heart of flesh. There was no victory like in the story of Esther. The author gives us one, and then reminds us in her note that that was part of the retelling aspect, and that in reality, no one stepped forward to save these people. That's a failing of humanity. I've read a ton of bad reviews objecting to the idea of a Christian book about a Jewish heroine, and that it's an atrocity that someone would "save" i. But they've obviously never read the book, as the heroine doesn't convert to Christianity.
I've read similar objections saying the author is dishonoring the plight of the Jews in the hands of the Nazis by redeeming an SS officer. Personally, I don't see how saying that one man might have been led to see his sin through this atrocity in any way diminishes the evils wrought by the regime. Evils that are painted quite clearly as just that in Breslin's book. Is it a true story? I wish it were.
Esther NIV - For if you remain silent at this time, - Bible Gateway
I wish the prisoners really had managed, through the help of a brave heroine, the victory they achieved in this book. I wish an Esther--and a Xerxes--had stepped up. The world might be a different place today. You'll get swept away by the prose, cheer for the heroes, and wish, as I did, that history really had happened this way a second time.
Oct 21, Jenny Q rated it really liked it Shelves: For Such a Time is an impressive debut. As soon as I saw the premise, I wanted to read it. I was drawn to the idea of a Jewish woman and a Nazi officer in love and wondered if the author would be able to pull off such an unlikely pairing believably. The answer is yes! The story begins with a young Jewish woman, Hadassah--or Stella, as she is officially known thanks to the false papers she carries confirming she is Aryan--being rescued from death by firing squad in Dachau by a Nazi officer.
Colon For Such a Time is an impressive debut. Colonel Aric von Schmidt is struck by the quiet defiance of the woman he believes was mistakenly interred. A wounded war hero, he has been removed from active duty and given an "honorable" position as commandant of Theresienstadt, a holding camp for Jews bound for Auschwitz.
The Red Cross is coming to inspect the Nazi interment camp, and Aric has been given the job of hiding the atrocities committed to convince the Red Cross that the Nazis' prisoners are being treated humanely.