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Shoes Along the Danube refers to the memorial of cast iron shoes that honor Hungarian Holocaust victims. Based on a true story, this amazing book follows the lives of two extended Hungarian families, the Rézlers and the Földes, one gentile and the other Jewish, through three decades.
The story begins in pre-World War II Budapest, as increasing fascism and anti-Semitism lead Hungary to become an ally of Germany. In 1944, Germany invades Hungary to exterminate Europe’s last remaining group of Jews at the infamous Auschwitz death camp. The story builds through the siege of Budapest, the Russian occupation of Hungary, and separation by exile.
Julius Rézler is a rising star among Budapest academics and refuses to compromise his integrity. His American half-brother, Francis, is a diplomat helping democratic Hungarians fight Nazis, and later organizes covert activities against the communists. Agnes Földes is a Jewish woman who fights to maintain her dignity during the Holocaust.
“Professor Reeves tells a fascinating story of two of his Hungarian-American friends, Julius and my cousin Agnes, who grew up between world wars in Gentile and Jewish families on Rose Hill, an affluent district of Budapest. Even though Hungary was forced to become Germany’s wartime ally, it looked that Hungarian Jews would be spared the genocide occurring throughout Europe. Yet, in 1944 everything changed when the Germans occupy Hungary for the purpose of exterminating Jews. Reeves recounts the experiences of Holocaust victims and survivors, Righteous Gentiles who save Jews, as well as a dramatic ending in which a husband and wife are forced to choose between their vows and freedom.” – S. A. Colman, Sydney, Australia
“A fascinating, honest look at lives intertwined with the history unfolding around them set against the very real backdrop of that tumultuous history itself. The Shoes Along the Danube is a most fitting allegory for all those that left their lives behind. Highly recommended” – Bryan Dawson, Executive Chairman, American Hungarian Federation
Keywords:- Holocaust, Wallenberg, Budapest, World War II, Displaced Persons, Refugees, Cold War.