Just when you thought there was nothing new that could possibly be said about the Holocaust, along come Gidon Lev and Julie Gray with this delightful, moving, original and yes charming account of an extraordinary man who happens to have been a child survivor of the Theresienstadt concentration camp. With irreverent humor and deep insight, “The True Adventures of Gidon Lev” presents an improbable love story -- of a man who had every reason to be bitter but instead fell in love with life. It is also the story of a late-life romance that will make you believe in happy-ever-after endings again. Read this wonderful book and you’ll fall in love too – with Gidon, with Julie, with the Jewish people and the nation they created out of the abyss.
--Yossi Klein Halevi, senior fellow, Shalom Hartman Institute, author, “Like Dreamers”
Gidon Lev arrived at a café near Tel Aviv one day in 2017, with a clipboard neatly tucked under one arm. It was stuffed with scribbled notes and receipts. With his merry blue eyes, shock of white hair, and a mischievous grin, eighty-two-year-old Gidon Lev did not fit my image of a Holocaust survivor. But then he was the only Holocaust survivor I had ever met.
So begins The True Adventures of Gidon Lev, the story of a man who never gave up on his future or his life and the writer he crossed paths with. Of the approximately 15,000 children imprisoned in the Nazi concentration camp of Terezin, between 132 and 92 children are known to have survived. Gidon Lev is one of those children.
With curiosity and compassion, The True Adventures examines everything from the abyss of the Holocaust to the history of Israel in the 21st century, the art of aging well, and the importance of being silly.
"You don't get the life you want," Gidon once said. "You get the life that you get."
From Prague to New York, California, and back to Israel, The True Adventures takes us on a journey with Gidon Lev and Julie Gray as they navigate the past and create a playful, joyful life together in the now.