I question why I never questioned it. I believed it; it was an incredible, hope-filled story.confesses literary agent Andrea Hurst about Herman Rosenblat's Angel at the Fence told how he and his wife met and fell in love on opposite sides of a barbed-wire fence as children in a concentration camp. And amazingly, he met the girl who'd saved his life years later - on a blind date!
Oprah featured the couple on her show. (You can see them below in a CBS news report) :
But holocaust historians and journalists questioned the veracity of aspects of the story (specifically that she threw him food and thus kept him alive) and the plug was pulled on the book. The movie deal too was off.
Rosenblat, though, says that he told the story the way he remembered it.
You may remember that there have been a whole string of "bogus memoirs" over the past few years, and one of the more recent featured another holocaust survivor, Misha Fonseca, with the incredible story of having been saved by wolves.
And I heard from a friend of another memoir set during the holocaust, this time by an elderly woman living in Britain, and that too was axed shortly before it was due to come out, after a prominent holocaust genealogist questioned some aspects of it. The author claims it was entirely true and those who have read it gave it very positive reviews. (Not mentioning specifics or giving links here because neither author or publisher would probably want the attention - but very sadly, the affair dealt a heavy financial blow to the small press in question.)
Anyway, it will be interesting to see if Oprah hauls Rosenblat up on her show to give him a good talking to as she did with James Frey!
(Thanks Chet for forwarding the link. The story is also in the Guardian today.)