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The Tattooist of Auschwitz - Heather Morris

The Tattooist of Auschwitz

By Heather Morris

  • Release Date: 2018-09-04
  • Genre: Historical
Score: 4.5
From 4,045 Ratings


The #1 International Bestseller & New York Times Bestseller

This beautiful, illuminating tale of hope and courage is based on interviews that were conducted with Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov—an unforgettable love story in the midst of atrocity.

“The Tattooist of Auschwitz is an extraordinary document, a story about the extremes of human behavior existing side by side: calculated brutality alongside impulsive and selfless acts of love. I find it hard to imagine anyone who would not be drawn in, confronted and moved. I would recommend it unreservedly to anyone, whether they’d read a hundred Holocaust stories or none.”—Graeme Simsion, internationally-bestselling author of The Rosie Project

In April 1942, Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew, is forcibly transported to the concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau. When his captors discover that he speaks several languages, he is put to work as a Tätowierer (the German word for tattooist), tasked with permanently marking his fellow prisoners.

Imprisoned for over two and a half years, Lale witnesses horrific atrocities and barbarism—but also incredible acts of bravery and compassion. Risking his own life, he uses his privileged position to exchange jewels and money from murdered Jews for food to keep his fellow prisoners alive.

One day in July 1942, Lale, prisoner 32407, comforts a trembling young woman waiting in line to have the number 34902 tattooed onto her arm. Her name is Gita, and in that first encounter, Lale vows to somehow survive the camp and marry her.

A vivid, harrowing, and ultimately hopeful re-creation of Lale Sokolov's experiences as the man who tattooed the arms of thousands of prisoners with what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust, The Tattooist of Auschwitz is also a testament to the endurance of love and humanity under the darkest possible conditions.


  • Compelling

    By Grandmother Joyce
    The feelings and thoughts expressed by the character, Lale, in the face of unbelievable choices and horrendous circumstances grabbed me right at the beginning. There are many Holocaust stories and books. This one is a top of my list, must read for the realism of one person’s journey through that horror.
  • Chilling

    By haleslynnnnnn
    So good! I felt like I was there with Lale and Gita as they were suffering, surviving, and falling in love.
  • Heartbreaking.

    By JonCav07
    This book was well written, but the subject matter is hard to get through. The systematic erasing of a culture is unfathomable to me.
  • A beautiful reading

    By Yay game:)!
    I could not put the book down and it had such a great ending
  • Excellent

    By Marias4
    Absolutely amazing story. Well written, captivating from start to finish. The Afterword is the perfect follow up to this moving and hope inspiring story.
  • Riveting

    By Jansjunk
    Real account of the horrors visited upon a race human beings. Also the power of willpower and love persevering. Timely in American politics of late.
  • Amazing book!

    By NessaVal
    I love this book! I couldn’t put it down. It’s a great read!
  • Great

    By JGToale
    I loved the book. It was captivating. I wish the end had been drawn out a bit more, though.
  • Underdeveloped characters and ending

    By L. Smelser
    I enjoyed the story and perspective of this book. However, there wasn’t a whole lot of character connection or development throughout the story. The ending was also sped up and ended too quickly.
  • A love story in the darkest of times!

    By cayton1
    Such a genuine and riveting account of Holocaust survivors. I am thrilled that he was finally able to tell their story.