Synopses & Reviews
While imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp, Simon Wiesenthal was taken one day from his work detail to the bedside of a dying member of the SS. Haunted by the crimes in which he had participated, the soldier wanted to confess to—and obtain absolution from—a Jew. Faced with the choice between compassion and justice, silence and truth, Wiesenthal said nothing. But even years after the war had ended, he wondered: Had he done the right thing? What would you have done in his place?
In this important book, fifty-three distinguished men and women respond to Wiesenthal's questions. They are theologians, political leaders, writers, jurists, psychiatrists, human rights activists, Holocaust survivors, and victims of attempted genocide in Bosnia, Cambodia, China, and Tibet. Their responses, as varied as their experiences of the world, remind us that Wiesenthal's questions are not limited to events of the past. Often surprising and always thought-provoking, The Sunflower will challenge you to define your beliefs about justice, compassion, and human responsibility.
"In simple yet elegant prose, Wiesenthal recreates the grim reality of a time when Eastern Europe was hell. Never lapsing into the maudlin or self-pitying, his matter-of-fact realism makes the images all the more horrifying." ---Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Author Simon Wiesenthal inquires into the possibilities and limits of compassion, forgiveness, justice, and human responsibility among a diverse group of fifty-three men and women, including Holocaust survivors, victims of attempted genocide, psychiatrists, political leaders, and more.
About the Author
Simon Wiesenthal (1908-2005) was born in Buczacz, Galicia, at that time a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. He was incarcerated between 1941 and 1945 in Buchenwald and Mauthausen and other concentration camps. In 1946, together with 30 other survivors, he founded the Jewish Historical Documentation Center, which was instrumental in the identification of over 1,100 Nazi war criminals. He was honored by the governments of Italy, the Netherlands, Israel, and the United States, and wrote books including The Murderers Among Us, Justice Not Vengeance, Sails of Hope, and Every Day Remembrance Day. Robertson Dean has recorded hundreds of audiobooks in most every genre. He's been nominated for several Audie Awards, won nine Earphones Awards, and was named one of AudioFile magazine's Best Voices of 2010. He lives in Los Angeles, where he records books and acts in film, TV, and (especially) on stage. Laural Merlington has recorded well over one hundred audiobooks, including works by Margaret Atwood and Alice Hoffman, and is the recipient of several AudioFile Earphones Awards. An Audie Award nominee, she has also directed over one hundred audiobooks. She has performed and directed for thirty years in theaters throughout the country. In addition to her extensive theater and voice-over work, Laural teaches college in her home state of Michigan.