The Takeaway Men by Meryl Ain +GIVEAWAY

Join us for this tour from July 14 to Aug 10, 2020!

Book Details:

Book Title:  The Takeaway Men by Meryl Ain

Category:  Adult fiction 18 yrs +,  264 pages

Genre:  Historical Fiction

Publisher:  Sparkpress

Release date:   August 4, 2020

Book Description:

With the cloud of the Holocaust still looming over them, twin sisters Bronka and Johanna Lubinski and their parents arrive in the US from a Displaced Persons Camp. In the years after World War II, they experience the difficulties of adjusting to American culture as well as the burgeoning fear of the Cold War. Years later, the discovery of a former Nazi hiding in their community brings the Holocaust out of the shadows. As the girls get older, they start to wonder about their parents’ pasts, and they begin to demand answers. But it soon becomes clear that those memories will be more difficult and painful to uncover than they could have anticipated. Poignant and haunting, The Takeaway Men explores the impact of immigration, identity, prejudice, secrets, and lies on parents and children in mid-twentieth-century America.

MY THOUGHTS ON THIS BOOK 

The Takeaway Men follows the Lubinski family and their lives during and many years following the Holocaust. Deciding to leave the Germany Displaced person Camp, they headed to America to restart their lives. I did enjoy the scene as the ship sails into New York Harbor and the family gets a first look at Lady Liberty. I could just imagine the awe of that sight for them.

Author Meryl Ain captures the many situations, feelings, fears, the horrible heartaches and heartbreaks the people had to face during and after the Holocaust. They lost so much, everything they had including family, friends, everything.  The authors unique details in each scene, the history on each page makes this story a wonderful read for those who enjoy stories about WWII.

The Lubinski family now lives in Queens NY, with family but they still have their own struggles, the different lifestyle in America was a real culture shock to them all. My favorite characters are the twins, it was fun watching the two as they grow up in Queens, making their own friends, even though life was still hard. There were so many questions, so many secrets, so much happening. And it is all beautifully woven together in this wonderful book that you can read for all of the answers!  If you are a WWII buff, you will love this story. And even though it is fiction, so many details here so relevant to things happening today. Grab a copy of Take Away Men today!

A special thanks to the author/publisher for a copy of this book. I am not required to write a positive review, the opinions here are mine alone. I am disclosing this with my review in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Splashes of Joy The following is a guest post from the author about the publication of her new debut novel, which is this book we are featuring today. Please take time to read this interesting post. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I hope you do as well.

Guest Post for Splashes of Joy

MERCY, JUSTICE AND HUMILITY THEN AND NOW

I’m excited for the publication of my debut novel, The Takeaway Men, on August 4 and I’m so thankful for this opportunity to write a guest blog here. My characters wrestle with secrets and lies and moral dilemmas. Their decisions impact not only themselves, but also their closest relatives and friends. I hope that my book inspires readers to grapple with some of the issues raised.

The overarching theme of my book raises the question: As human beings, what is our responsibility to one another? This is a subject that has always been of particular interest to me and it is especially important at this moment in the history of our country and the world.

The heroine in my novel, Dyta/Judy/Edyta risks her life to save Jews from the Nazis during World War II.  How many people would risk danger, like she did, for someone else?

How do we – as human beings — react to evil in our world? Do we speak out when we see others in danger? How do we treat those who are different from us? Do we inconvenience ourselves to help someone else? Do we participate in unkind and uncaring behavior because everyone else is doing it? Do we stand idly by and do nothing? Or do we speak out and take action against it?

Today, our country is in the middle of a pandemic and social upheaval and all around us there is pain and heartache and hunger. We each have more than enough of our own problems. But what is the right thing to do when we see others suffering?

Certainly, health care workers have put their patients above themselves, risking their lives to treat and heal others. So have essential workers, who ensure people have enough to eat. There are courageous volunteers who risk their own health and safety to feed and clothe and comfort others.

During these trying times, I am reminded of the prophet Micah’s words. Micah mentions three things God “requires” of us: doing “justice; mercy, and walking humbly.” All three of these words require action.

I hope that readers will come away from The Takeaway Men with a renewed appreciation of the issues and dilemmas my characters experienced in the times in which they lived. Similarly, that they will look into their own hearts and act with justice, mercy and humility – towards not only their friends and neighbors, but strangers.

Author Questions and Answers 

1. While the bulk of your novel is set in Queens, NY after World War II, Poland and Germany — during and immediately after the war — play an important part in the story. What made you choose to focus more on the years after the Holocaust than the period during the war?

I thought it was important to tell the story of what happened to Holocaust survivors in America in the post-war era, and also to emphasize how they were able to survive during the war and later raise families. While there are many novels about the horrors of the Holocaust, very few focus on the lives of the survivors and their children in the aftermath. I wanted to focus on the complexity of that experience. I also wanted to pay tribute to the righteous Christians, who helped to save Jews. I wanted to pose moral dilemmas and questions of faith that were, of necessity, viewed differently in the two time periods.

2. Were you surprised by any of the research you conducted as you wrote this book?

Yes, I was. For example, I found that while the Catholic Church has been criticized for not doing enough to save Jews during the Holocaust, there were many lay people of faith as well as clergy who risked their lives to save their Jewish neighbors. Poland has a very mixed history. On the one hand, the Kielce Pogrom, where an angry mob killed 42 Jews and injured 40, took place a year after the war was over. But at the same time, Poland has the most representation among The Righteous of the Nations, at Yad Vashem, the Israeli Holocaust Museum, which honors Christians who saved Jews. I was also surprised to learn that in the ‘50s, the U.S. government turned a blind eye to former Nazis, who were living in America. The country was much more concerned about the Soviet Union and pursuing Communists.

3.Who do you think should read your book?

Although it is an adult book, as a former high school teacher, I believe that high school students studying the Holocaust could read it and learn much about both the Holocaust and the post-war era in the United States. Adults who are interested in the Holocaust and the ‘50s and early ‘60s – especially baby boomers and their children – would enjoy the cultural references as well as the story. Those who are interested in themes of religious identity, sibling relationships, family, and uncovering secrets would also enjoy it. As one reviewer said: “The Takeaway Men is also a portrait of the power of love and the ability of family to embrace and heal.”

4. You mentioned that you were a high school teacher; what did you teach? Do you consider teaching or writing as your career?

I worked in the schools for many years, both as a high school history teacher and later as a school administrator. I love history and current events, and I really enjoy research. This book required many years of research. While I was working in the schools full time, I often wrote non-fiction pieces, so I considered writing a second career. But now that I am retired, writing is my full-time career. The Takeaway Men is my first novel. But I also wrote two non-fiction books in 2014 and 2016. Both The Living Memories Project: Legacies That Last and its companion, My Living Memories Project Journal, focus on helping individuals heal after losing loved ones. Interestingly, my novel is also about how a family heals. I feel blessed that I am now able to write full time and to share my work with others.

5. What’s next for you?

I’m going to be trying to spread the word about The Takeaway Men for the coming months. I am scheduled to do a number of virtual events, and I’m always happy to meet with book clubs and other groups. It looks like it’s going to be impossible to travel for the foreseeable future, so Zoom, Skype, and Facebook have become my friends. And I’ve met so many wonderful book lovers via social media. I am also toying with another novel. A number of people have asked for a sequel. I’m so gratified that they have become so invested in the characters that they want to know what happened to them. So that’s a possibility.

SPLASHES  OF JOY…Thank you so much Meryl Ain for answering these questions so we can get to know you and your writing better. We really appreciate it very much! 

Now Available for Pre-order!
Release date: August 4, 2020
Amazon.com ~ Barnes & Noble ~ IndieBound

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Meet the Author:

MerylAin’s articles and essays have appeared in Huffington Post, The New York Jewish Week, The New York Times, Newsday and other publications. The Takeaway Men is her debut novel.

In 2014, she co-authored the award-winning book, The Living Memories Project: Legacies That Last, and in 2016, wrote a companion workbook, My Living Memories Project Journal. She is a sought-after speaker and has been interviewed on television, radio, and podcasts. She is a career educator and is proud to be both a teacher and student of history. She has also worked as a school administrator.

The Takeaway Men is the result of her life-long quest to learn more about the Holocaust, a thirst that was first triggered by reading The Diary of Anne Frank in the sixth grade. While teaching high school history, she introduced her students to the study of the Holocaust. At the same time, she also developed an enduring fascination with teaching about and researching the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg case. An interview with Robert Meeropol, the younger son of the Rosenbergs, is featured in her book, The Living Memories Project. The book also includes an interview with Holocaust survivor, Boris Chartan, the founder of the Holocaust Museum and Tolerance Center of Nassau County, New York. Meryl holds a BA from Queens College, an MA from Teachers College, Columbia University, and an Ed.D. from Hofstra University. She lives in New York with her husband, Stewart. They have three married sons and six grandchildren.

Connect with the author:  Website  ~ Facebook Twitter ~ Instagram

Tour Schedule:

July 14 – Viviana MacKade – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway

July 14 – Working Mommy Journal – book review / giveaway

July 14 – Book World Reviews  – book review / author interview

July 15 – 100 Pages A Day – book review / giveaway

July 16 – RebeccaReviewedIt – book review / author interview

July 17 – T’s Stuff – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway

July 18 – Just One More Chapter – book review

July 20 – Pick a good book – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway

July 21 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway

July 22 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway

July 23 – Olio by Marilyn – book spotlight / author interview

July 23 – Olio by Marilyn – book review / giveaway

July 24 – THE WORLD AS I SEE IT – book review

July 27 – Book after Book – book spotlight / author interview

July 28 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway

July 28 – Leels Loves Books – book review / giveaway

July 29 – She Just Loves Books – book review / giveaway

July 30 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway

July 31 – Reading is My Passion – book review / giveaway

July 31 – The Eclectic Review – book review

Aug 3 – I’m All About Books – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway

Aug 3 – Sefina Hawke’s Books – book spotlight

Aug 4 – Library of Clean Reads – book review / giveaway

Aug 4 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway

Aug 4 – Peaceful Pastime – book review

Aug 4 – Book Corner News and Reviews – book review / giveaway

Aug 5 – Svetlanas reads and views – book review

Aug 5 – Books and Zebras – book review / giveaway

Aug 5 – Alexis Marie Chute – book review / author interview

Aug 6 – Pen Possessed – book review / giveaway

Aug 6 – Books for Books – book spotlight

Aug 7 – StoreyBook Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway

Aug 10 – My Fictional Oasis – book review

Aug 10 – Adventurous Jessy – book review / giveaway

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Meryl Ain
    Jul 22, 2020 @ 00:34:28

    Thank you, Joy, for the beautiful review and wonderful coverage!

    Like

    Reply

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