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July 17 , 2007

Rosa's Child

The True Story of one Woman's Quest for a Lost Mother and a Vanished Past


Born in Germany in 1936, three year old Susi Bechhofer and her twin sister Lotte were among thousands of children evacuated on the now famous Kindertransport as the country fell into the cruel grip of Nazism. Adopted by the Manns, a childless Welsh Baptist minister and his wife on their arrival in Britain, the two girls were given a new identity in an attempt to erase all traces of their previous existence: Susi and Lotte became Grace and Eunice.

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Only 50 years later did Susi begin to unravel the truth of her incredible past: she was the child of a Nazi solder and of Rosa, an unmarried Jewish girl who died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz shortly after sending her children to safety in England. The shattering discovery of Susi's real identity was only the beginning of a painful, frustrating and courageous quest in search of her past and for the surviving members of her natural family. Starting with a German phone book, Susi began a long series of telephone calls that would, incredibly, lead her to her half-sister and other long-lost relatives.

A bleak childhood only added to Susi's misery and confusion: Susi had to come to terms with both her hidden family and the truth about her adoptive father. The domineering and possessive Mr. Mann governed Susi with a regime of psychological and sexual abuse during her years in his care.
In the light of these incredible revelations, Susi has had to reappraise her life and to shed her status as a victim. A remarkable story, ROSAíS CHILD is the tragic, yet ultimately uplifting account of one woman's determined journey in search of her past and herself.

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