Praise for the Book

“I just finished reading Shattered Stars, Healing Hearts and I am writing these words with tears in my eyes. I felt like I was inside Irene Stern Frielich’s story as each part of her father’s journey was uncovered. Throughout, I felt Irene’s father’s presence, long after he had died, guiding her, encouraging her, and pushing her in her search, not only of the tragedies and horrors, but also of the incredible righteousness of those who helped. Irene’s ability to imagine her father within the facts she was learning was poignant and powerful and her perseverance was breathtaking.”

— Jane Taubenfeld Cohen, Jewish Day School educator and child of a survivor

“This is a gripping memoir in which readers will discover a strong intersection between the violence of Nazi Germany and the anti-Semitic rhetoric that characterized the period of the elections in the US in 2016.”

—Romuald Dzemo, Readers’ Favorite

“A compelling narrative of Holocaust memory and its links to the present. Stern Frielich’s search through her father’s stories of survival during the Nazi era is told in a loving way that offers the reader a glimpse into the possibilities of hope and resilience in times of social conflict. An enriching read even in times of social darkness.”

— John T. Pawlikowski, OSM, Ph.D, Professor Emeritus of Social Ethics at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago

“Author Irene Stern Frielich has a beautiful way of connecting past to present in this expansive and enthralling work of both biography and memoir … a demonstration of the raw emotive power of storytelling … ”

—K.C. Finn, Readers’ Favorite

“A thoroughly readable, bitter-sweet exploration of one family’s story of survival. Irene has successfully used her father’s testimony, family treasures, and her own imagination to weave a compelling narrative highlighting emotional, personal, and physical connections to the not-too-distant past, while at the same time leaving the reader wondering whether enough lessons have been learned for the future.”

— Jessica Feinstein, Managing Editor, JewishGen Press

“Irene Stern Frielich has taken us all on her journey to connect us to her personal pursuit of healing and our collective need for understanding, remembrance, and reconciliation. It is as important as ever for those who carry the generational trauma of Holocaust survivors to tell the stories so they may heal and we can protect ourselves from future atrocities. Thank you, Irene, for your courage.”

— Mara Safer, Program Facilitator, Anti-Defamation League

“A deeply impactful and insightful read!”

—Christine Nguyen, Readers’ Favorite

“Irene is a remarkable, courageous woman with a story of reconciliation to tell. Her journey to retrace her father’s steps and heal from the horrors he faced is a powerful one that gripped me every step of the way.”

—Virginia Swain, Reconciliation Leader, Institute for Global Leadership

“The emotional narrative transforms this memoir into a thrilling story that is impossible to put down. The author skillfully interweaves the memories of her father from the testimony video with the recreated facts of his life in Germany and Holland and her own amazing experiences and unexpected encounters in Europe.”

—Nino Lobiladze, Readers’ Favorite

“It is estimated that six million European Jews were killed during the Holocaust. The brutal killings started during Kristallnacht in Nov 1938 and continued with systematic mass murders in concentration camps finally ending in May 1945 with the allied defeat of the Nazis during World War II. This devastating loss represented two-thirds of the Jewish population in Europe at that time. However, it’s important to note that there were an estimated three million survivors as well. Each survivor’s harrowing story was different. Irene’s compelling story of her father’s survival and liberation captures the very personal trauma of one Jewish Holocaust survivor’s unique challenges and hardships living through this most devastating period in Jewish history and the impact it had on his daughter.”

—Irv Kempner, Chairman, New England Friends of the March of the Living

“ … an emotional, compelling memoir exquisitely written …”

—Michelle Robertson, Readers’ Favorite

“Irene’s beautifully written memoir will resonate with anyone who has grappled with the inherited trauma of a family’s persecution.”

—Donna Swarthout, Editor and Co-Author of A Place They Called Home. Reclaiming Citizenship. Stories of a New Jewish Return to Germany

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