Edith Hahn Beer was forced into a slave labor camp when the Gestapo took over her life and her world. A strong and determined woman, she was willing to do whatever it took to survive…even if that meant marrying a member of the Nazi Party, which she did.
Told in frank and harrowing detail by both Edith and writer Susan Dworkin, A Nazi Officer’s Wife is a bleak look at the horrific struggles endured not just by Edith but by her family as well. The suffering they all endured is hard to read, but it’s a necessity that Edith’s life and the lives of other Jewish people never be forgotten.
The Nazi Officer’s Wife details Edith Hahn Beer’s story of survival
Edith’s marriage to Werner Vetter wasn’t one awash in happily ever after. Though he knew she was a Jew, he married her anyway. But Werner wanted a housewife who would conform to his will, who was content at home. After he was captured by the Soviets, she was forced to get work to support her and her daughter, and when he was released, Werner didn’t like the wife he came home to.
This was a book I couldn’t put down. From the moment I started reading it, Edith’s story drew me in. I couldn’t feel her fear, but it leaped out at me from the pages. I held my breath so many times while I turned each one, waiting, anticipating the moment when the truth about her life would be discovered, and she would be sent to a concentration camp.
The Nazi Officer’s Wife: How One Jewish Woman Survived the Holocaust has been translated into dozens of languages and A&E produced a documentary about Edith’s life which was, unsurprisingly, nominated for an Emmy. This book isn’t an easy read, but it’s a necessary one because we shouldn’t forget history nor the people who suffered for no reason other than the hatred of others.