Written in third person, names altered, Irene Even tells of her weighty life story. A woman knocked down by life multiple times yet she manages to pick herself up, brush off the dust to move forward, a testament to her strength and courage.
Irene Even possesses unbelievable patience and tolerance, especially in regards to her former maniacal husband and stormy relations with her two children. She survives a dismal childhood, war, yet finds herself in the middle of an ongoing familial civil war.
“She could easily have perished so many times, without anyone ever being aware of her Fate, first having been robbed of her childhood, her youth, her womanhood, her motherhood, and now even her grand motherhood, all because ‘the Devil himself’ had accidentally—or deliberately—crossed her path so many years ago.”
I truly believe a person’s mettle is tested by how they handle life’s challenges, Irene is proof of this statement. I do believe Irene made the best possible choices and decisions at the time given her unfathomable challenges. A people pleaser, giving until she loses herself, I’m happy she finally found personal resolve. She is courageous and possesses a strength few can claim. Her yearning for inner peace, her love of her career served as her saving grace.
No doubt Irene shared herself in a tempered manner, I appreciate reading her story, her candor and I admire her strength, determination and independence as a woman. A woman confronting her past, dealing with her present, her future is her’s to manipulate. Forgiving but never forgetting. Quite a story, memorable woman, inspirational.
A Life of the Twentieth Century is the story of Aya, who lived through the loss of her parents before the age of 3. At the age of twelve she was sent to a boarding school in Budapest, that closed after one year, because the Nazi army marched into the city.
Aya was left totally alone to face the Nazi occupation, and to experience all the horrors of the war. She faced many life threatening situations, such as prison, bombardment or even the possibility of being executed on the spot, without really comprehending the gravity of it all.
The end of the war was supposed to mean liberation, the return of hope and freedom for most people, however it didn’t happen for Aya, who was part of a youth group on her way to Palestine. The destination of this youth group was to reach Italy and the Jewish Brigade. They crossed the Alps on foot from Austria to reach Italy.
As they reached their destination Aya met a soldier from the Jewish Brigade, who was supposed to be her Hero, her Saviour, but turned out to be the devil incarnate. From day one, this soldier of the Jewish brigade took control of Aya’s life when she was only 15 years old.
After divorce, destitute and once again alone, she had no direction and almost no hope, when from deep inside her a small voice said; go back to school. It took all her courage to apply to university, where she was accepted and after 5 year was granted a B.A. and a Diploma of Teaching. She spent the rest of her life teaching, and as she contemplated her life she said to herself that if she had had all the choices in the world, she would have chosen teaching.
Irene Even was born in Hungary. As a child she lived through the Second World War, using false papers to survive. After the war, she immigrated to Palestine, lived in a Kibbutz, then later married and immigrated to Canada with her family. She returned to Israel to teach English and remained there for twenty-two years. Having written her memoir, A Life of the Twentieth Century, she now lives in retirement in Montreal.
Enter to win one of 10 ebook copies of A Life of the Twentieth Century or a $10 Amazon gift card / Open internationally. Ends March 21. ENTRY-FORM
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