Image of Mischling
Release Date: 
September 5, 2016
Lee Boudreaux Books
Reviewed by: 

Mischling is a gripping, powerful novel of twin Jewish girls who become victims of the infamous Dr. Josef Mengele’s medical experiments at Auschwitz. Twins Pearl and Stasha are inseparable and dedicated to each other in a way that most siblings cannot imagine. Their love is unbreakable. But the diabolical Mengele separates them, which is more painful than the dreadful experiments, starvation, and brutality.

The twins’ father disappears before the beginning of the story, arrested by the Gestapo. Their mother and grandfather are sent to the gas chamber upon arrival at Auschwitz. Pearl is kept in a cage after her legs are deliberately broken by Mengele. Stasha lives in the barracks for twins at Auschwitz, where she develops close friendships. Independently, the twins dedicate their lives to saving each other and murdering the monster Mengele.

Mischling is creatively told through the eyes of each twin, alternating chapter by chapter. This artistic technique produces a unique perspective. It’s a traumatic and painful read. It is also an intimate, haunting story that compels the reader to go on. Author Konar deploys eloquent metaphor and descriptive dialog. She captures the constant terror facing Jewish children torn away from parents and grandparents and forced to fend for themselves in a nightmarish world of adversity and pain.

The twins are fictitious, but author Konar inserts them into a barracks filled with real twins, some of whom survive the Holocaust and assist the author with preparation and research. Their stories are the foundation of this book. They are a driving force, pushing the reader to continue despite the terror certain to arrive.

Mischling is a heartbreaking story of faith and survival, set in the darkest, most horrific place in history. Here we find an affirmation of the power of family, commitment, and love. We are introduced to the ultimate dichotomy of evil and righteousness, light and darkness, despair and hope.

It is difficult to imagine being a small child, ripped away from family and left to fend for yourself in a Nazi death camp. Although the twins are fictitious, this is a harrowing story filled with beauty, hope, and unyielding commitment to survival.

Children who called Mengele, “Uncle Doctor” were forced to grow up swiftly or face certain death. Inside a small cage in a dark laboratory, starved, tortured, and suffering from cruel medical experiments, we discover a remarkable story of human resilience. It is a tale of children’s strength, hope, love, and the powerful determination to survive.