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Paperback Konin: One Man's Quest for a Vanished Jewish Community Book

ISBN: 0679758232

ISBN13: 9780679758235

Konin: One Man's Quest for a Vanished Jewish Community

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Book Overview

The internationally acclaimed story of a Jewish ghetto in a small town in Poland--and of one man's obsessive quest to discover its fate and its survivors after the Holocaust. - A stunning achievement.... A deep and powerful book.... He has re-created a world. --The New York Times

In 1939 the Polish town of Konin vanished in the wake of Nazi occupation. Twenty-five years later, Theo Richmond set out to find what he could about...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

THIS IS A MUST!

My wife Urszula and I had decided to take a day out in London, some sight seeing and shopping. We passed the many book shops on Charing Cross rd, but a book in one shop window caught my eye, 'Konin, a quest'. My wife is Polish, from the town of Konin. But what could this book be about, we wonder? There is nothing in Konin. How wrong we were! The book amazed us. I have read many publications on the holocaust, but nothing moved me quite like this book. The research and the feeling, the hardwork put into this account of a community so thoroughly wiped out that my wife hadn't even been aware that a Jewish community had ever existed and yet she grew up on its streets. In fact, the school she went to, the Gymnasium was built by the jewish people prior to the war. But nothing was or is taught about the jewish people within its walls, no reminders, nothing. Until now. Theo Richmond's work is a priceless reminder of want was lost and what should never be forgotten. We look forward greatly to the day the book is published in polish, when everyone there has a chance to understand just what was lost. We met Theo recently, his powerful charater came across so well in his book, as it is such an honest account, that it felt as though we had known him for years. Buy It! It is the best book you will ever read on the Jewish people.

An amazing piece of work

My great grandparents came from Lithuania. I am Jewish but I have no feelings for the religous aspect of Judiasm. I am intrigued by the culture of the people and their history that was wiped out in the second world war. Konin represents years of work that the author put into this project. Sadly there are so many people who were no longer living for him to speak to. However, by traveling all over the world he was able to connect with many former residents of the town in Poland. He has pieced together an astounding history of a world that no longer exists. It was fascinating to have this glimpse into that world of Eastern Europe. Richmond has provided us with an important historical document which is also an intriguing story.

Fantastic-1.000.000 stars well deserved historical dinosaur.

I am one of many little people that "A Quest" and Theo Richmond in person change, enriched and effected in a very special way. Becouse of fantastic and systematic research I was called by Theo Richmond and advised by him that I am his relative and we have a family in U.K.-Israel and the U.S.A. My name is Mieczyslaw Ryczke and I live with my family in Toronto since 1968. I remember Konin where as a student in a public school (1947--1949)I was with my mother and a handfull of survivers.I learned more from Theo's book about Konin and the roots of my family than from my mother and her sisters that did not reveal any new facts to my limited knowledge about Konin and our family.I lived in Israel for 18 years never knowing that I have a great family right there and I never heard of Theo Richmond in London or Mira Kimmelman (Ryczke) in Tennesie, I did not know that Hanoah Ryczka live in Florida or the only person that personaly new my father Mr. Harry Kaplan with his wife live in the U.K. and so on and so on! No lottery win or any happaning would fulfill more the emptines of my soulsearching than this great- great book. God bless you Theo Richmond and I anticipate for Your next one . Mieczyslaw Ryczke shine@globalserve.net

A compelling social history of a lost population

This is not just another Holocaust book. Not just another narrative of tragic suffering and heroic survival. KONIN A Quest is a compelling historical research about a specific small town, Konin, located in western Poland. Konin is the town where the author, Theo Richmond's, family came from. Growing up in London, he heard and overheard stories his parents told about their home town. As a young person, wanting to fit in and be accepted by his peers, these stories barely interested if not embarrassed the young Richmond. As an adult he became curious about his parents' town and the result for us is this book. We are told about the general history Konin and it's place in Polish history. Richmond gives us details about the Jewish settlement in the town; how in the year 1883 out of a total of 6500 residents 50 % were Jewish. Richmond's father, along with many others, left Konin in the early 1900's realizing what a bleak future awaited them in their native town. Theo Richmond's quest is to recreate for his readers a feeling for what Konin was for it's Jewish citizens. He interviews almost every living person who once called Konin their home. (Only one Jewish woman returned to live in Konin after World War II.) He relates to us their most intimate memories regarding their families. He describes in detail the very well stocked Jewish lending library, occupations and professions of various individuals, the school system, the social structure etc. In each case the personalities of those involved are felt by the reader. When Richmond was lucky enough to meet the individuals who actually lived in Konin he conveys to us how the time spent there has influenced the rest of their lives. He relates to us the horrors experienced by many for the survivors of the holocaust and their dispair when returning to Konin at the end of World War II, to find that almost no one of their family or acquaintances had survived. When I finished the book, and closed the back cover, I felt that I had been a part of this one town in Poland. I had met the actual people who had live there, known a part of their lives and felt their pain at having been uprooted and lost so much. The town of Konin has changed dramatically since the time when a large Jewish community was a part of its population but Theo Richmond has succeded in his quest to relay to the world what that town was like in a different era.

A compelling social history of a population now extinct

This is not just another Holocaust book. Not just another narrative of tragic suffering and heroic survival. KONIN A Quest is a compelling historical research about a specific small town, Konin, located in western Poland. Konin is the town where the author, Theo Richmond's, family came from. Growing up in London, he heard and overheard stories his parents told about their home town. As a young person, wanting to fit in and be accepted by his peers, these stories barely interested if not embarrassed the young Richmond. As an adult he became curious about his parents' town and the result for us is this book. We are told about the general history Konin and it's place in Polish history. Richmond gives us details about the Jewish settlement in the town; how in the year 1883 out of a total of 6500 residents 50 % were Jewish. Richmond's father, along with many others, left Konin in the early 1900's realizing what a bleak future awaited them in their native town. Theo Richmond's quest is to recreate for his readers a feeling for what Konin was for it's Jewish citizens. He interviews almost every living person who once called Konin their home. (Only one Jewish woman returned to live in Konin after World War II.) He relates to us their most intimate memories regarding their families. He describes in detail the very well stocked Jewish lending library, occupations and professions of various individuals, the school system, the social structure etc. In each case the personalities of those involved are felt by the reader. When Richmond was lucky enough to meet the individuals who actually lived in Konin he conveys to us how the time spent there has influenced the rest of their lives. He relates to us the horrors experienced by many for the survivors of the holocaust and their dispair when returning to Konin at the end of World War II, to find that almost no one of their family or acquaintances had survived. When I finished the book, and closed the back cover, I felt that I had been a part of this one town in Poland. I had met the actual people who had live there, known a part of their lives and felt their pain at having been uprooted and lost so much. The town of Konin has changed dramatically since the time when a large Jewish community was a part of its population but Theo Richmond has succeded in his quest to relay to the world what that town was like in a different era.
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