Read touching the wire by Rebecca Bryn Online


Librarian note: alternate cover edition ASIN - B00MX5TRPYPart One - In the Shadow of the Wolf In a death camp in 1940’s Poland, a young doctor and one of his nurses struggle to save lives. As their relationship blossoms, amid the death and deprivation, they join the camp resistance and, despite the danger of betrayal, he steals damning evidence of war-crimes. Afraid of repLibrarian note: alternate cover edition ASIN - B00MX5TRPYPart One - In the Shadow of the Wolf In a death camp in 1940’s Poland, a young doctor and one of his nurses struggle to save lives. As their relationship blossoms, amid the death and deprivation, they join the camp resistance and, despite the danger of betrayal, he steals damning evidence of war-crimes. Afraid of repercussions, and for the sake of his post-war family he hides the evidence, but hard truths and terrible choices haunt him, as does a promise not kept. Part Two – Though the Heavens should Fall In present-day England, his granddaughter seeks to answer the questions posed by an enigmatic carving. Her own relationship in tatters, she meets a modern historian who, intrigued by the carving, agrees to help her discover its purpose. As her grandfather’s past seeps into the present, she betrays the man she loves and is forced to confront her own guilt in order to be able to forgive the unforgivable and keep her grandfather’s promise....

Title : touching the wire
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 23489047
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 387 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

touching the wire Reviews

  • Michael Kroft
    2019-02-22 02:06

    Once in a while I’ll read an indie novel and feel strongly that it was the author’s choice to independently publish, and Touching the Wire is one of those novels. This very well written and well researched novel by Rebecca Bryn deals with the horrifying subject of the Jewish Holocaust as the background to the mystery and romance to come.Told in two parts, the first masterfully jumps back and forth between an old man’s post war family and his shocking firsthand experiences within the most known and infamous of the many wired walled Jewish concentration camps of World War Two. But there is an interesting take to his experiences: It’s from the administrative side. Written more in the style of literary/historical fiction genre, Rebecca Bryn doesn’t hold back as she sets up part two by describing the camp life and a rare love found there using the old man’s flashbacks as he applies his craft of woodworking in preparation for his post-death redemption.Where in part one Bryn continually causes the reader to ask questions regarding the purpose of the mysterious carvings the old man is creating, in part two, she gradually and masterfully answers them all as the story turns into the mystery/romance genre. When the old man’s then adult granddaughter stumbles across one of several of his carvings, her curiosity is aroused, and perhaps as an escape from her marriage’s poor situation, she becomes determined to find the rest and to understand their combined meaning.In the true mystery sense, Bryn takes the reader on a journey of discovery, sometimes shocking them and at other times requiring a wiping of a tear, as more and more of the puzzle is put together to finally reveal that not all the granddaughter had known is as it was.It’s rare to find a novel that keeps my interest at every sentence, but this was one.-Michael Kroft, Author of On Herring Cove Road.

  • Max Power
    2019-02-12 22:45

    The book opens with a quote from the great Irish writer orator and statesman Edmund Burke.. "triumph of evil is that good men do nothing"... and it is an apt opening to set the scene for this terrific book. I am hard to please sometimes, but here Rebecca has written a book that is so stylised, clearly well researched but most importantly a book that tells a ripping tale that I was engrossed in from start to finish. A tale split in two from war torn Germany to present day, the way in which she switches back and forth creates the perfect tension that kept me deciding to read 'just one more chapter.' It is one f my favourite tactics employed by some writers, but it can fall flat on its face if not balanced and engaging. As always, no plot spoilers from me. I have read a lot of books in the past few months and for me this one is competes at the top end in terms of quality and in particular, engagement. Loved it and will have to go back to the Rebecca Bryn well again. Pick this one up.

  • Stuart Murray
    2019-01-25 17:48

    The atrocities that went on in Auschwitz have been well documented, as has the horror of the capability of human beings toward one another. This book depicts the story of what was endured by those imprisoned in flashbacks from the perspective of a survivor of that concentration camp, and then from his granddaughter as she embarks on a quest to uncover his truth.But it is the telling of the story, the writing and the characters created by the author that produce a work that is uniquely interesting. entertaining, and informative, not just from the perspective of those incredible events, but of the later determination of a young woman to understand, while dealing with her own struggle to find her way in life.Touching The Wire is a well written, thought provoking five star read. Highly recommended

  • Michelle
    2019-02-10 20:01

    From a young age, I’ve always been fascinated by stories of the Holocaust, and this story is one of the best I’ve read in recent years. There’s something deeply satisfying about immersing yourself and being caught up in the distinct rhythm of a good story. The world around you fades away and you don’t feel time passing. I actually finished the story in a day - starting late afternoon, taking a break at midnight and then finishing off the following morning. It’s well-researched and deeply authentic. I was convinced that events are from first-hand experience, or information passed on by a family member who had been there and witnessed the atrocities. The author did an excellent job in many aspects: linking the past and the present; weaving the historical elements and the mythological elements in such a smooth manner; and creating the multiple layers that give rise to this vivid and stimulating world filled with so many questions... The author’s storytelling skill gave me the opportunity to travel this rollercoaster journey along with the well-crafted characters. I’m looking forward to reading more stories by Rebecca Bryn.

  • Deborah Mitton
    2019-02-04 22:13

    A beautiful - heartbreaking novel! This is the second novel of Rebecca I have read. There is no comparison between the two.Touching the Wire is one of the best book I have read in my life. Be prepared to have your heart pulled out of your chest and stepped on. You mind and soul will be on a roller coaster ride of heartbreak and despair. I think it was the descriptions Rebecca has given / you can picture so vividly in your mind and you know that many of the events really happened. Ask yourself this question - is there anything you couldn't forgive - from a person you loved.Thanks Rebecca for a wonderful experience.

  • Diana Febry
    2019-02-23 01:56

    An exceptional book, with universal appeal. A character driven book with elements of mystery and romance but at its heart, some quite controversial and thought provoking issues. We meet Walt as a devoted grandfather, father and husband, suffering from horrendous nightmares and flash backs to his time in Auschwitz during WW11. We learn how Walt saved a young Jewish girl from the gas chambers, falls in love and secretly marries her. We hear of his efforts to save people within the camp and how he passes messages for the resistance movement. But little by little, we learn of his darker memories. For Walt was not an innocent prisoner. He was the young doctor in charge of the infirmary and assisted in macabre experiments. Years later, Charlotte discovers a strange carving, made by her grandfather, containing lockets of hair, candles and a strange message. With her marriage failing she becomes determined to solve the riddle and discover the secret her grandfather kept locked up, for so long. The story is at times harrowing and often gripping. The characters felt so real, I could feel their pain, in-decision and shame. The ending was powerful and re confirmed the lessons learnt are often not heeded, by nations or individuals. One short scene, that summed up the book for me - Walt (Chuck) delivers a baby and immediately suffocates it. If the guards had discovered the pregnancy and birth, mother & child would have been burnt alive. That's some Hobson's choice. If I had to say something negative about this book, I'd say it did take a few chapters to really get started. However, the feast that lay beyond was well worth it!Brilliantly written book. I highly recommend it.

  • Christoph Fischer
    2019-01-27 19:47

    "Touching the Wire" by Rebecca Bryn is a heavy and at times difficult read. The location is a death camp in Poland 1940 and the author spares us little to show the gruesomeness that is camp life. This is the strength of the first part. Much of the literature about the time glosses over and makes us shed a tear. Bryn is more truthful, yet then manages to weave in a love story between an inmate and a young doctor. Very powerful and impressive with lots to think about and reflect upon.Then forward to present day England where the granddaughter of the doctor delves into the past. When I saw the second part I thought I knew where this would be going but Bryn does an excellent job at bringing the halves together. A great read I would definitely recommend.

  • Cathy Donnelly
    2019-02-05 22:08

    I bought this book some time ago but I kept putting off opening it because of the content. I am so glad I worked up the courage to read it because painful as it was, it tells of a time in the world’s history that needs to be remembered.It was often hard to continue to the next page and the events are overwhelmingly heartbreaking. The author has written her characters in a way that they across as being totally believable in their reactions. There was the combination of love and hate, cruelty and kindness, acceptance and hope.

  • Paul Ruddock
    2019-01-26 18:11

    There are many adjectives I could use in my review of this book: powerful, moving, emotional, heart-breaking, and heart-warming in places to name but a few. It would be easy to say this book is about the holocaust, but in truth that aspect of the book is more of a vehicle and backdrop to the real story - of courage, the struggle to survive against impossible odds, and later in the story, a search for the truth and long buried secrets of the past. The strength and emotion of the writing gives the book a 'true story' feel to it, like you're a witness to a heart rending tragedy unfolding before you and yet behind the fiction there exists the uncomfortable knowledge that such tragedies were all too real at the time. This work of historical fiction is both a thriller and a detective story, as well as one of impossible and enduring love and sacrifice. Imagine yourself as someone whose profession and calling is to do what they can to save people's lives and alleviate their suffering, having to witness and be a party to unimaginable cruelty and sadism, to live amongst it every day knowing the slightest overt criticism or resistance to it could mean your instant death; in short, a concentration camp doctor is emotionally torn apart by the horror of his surrounding and work. He does what he can to minimise his patients' suffering, often having to commit the most appalling acts for a greater good. And then he falls in love with just such a patient. Having to see her suffering makes his position even more intolerable and at the same time, urgent. He promises that the true horror of the concentration camps will one day be known, and from that promise a generations spanning story of cleverly crafted detective work, family secrets, and the horrors of the past emerge.There are some obvious comparisons with Thomas Keneally's Schindler's Ark here, i.e. someone working with and for the Nazi regime, doing what he can at great personal risk to help those suffering at its hands but who isn't without his own flaws and guilt, having at times to make impossible choices that will determine who lives and who dies. The stark imagery and cold reality, and indeed brutality at times, emphasise the horror of the period and place in which much of the story takes. The author doesn't try to sensationalise or exaggerate the descriptive elements relating to the concentration camp and the atrocities being committed on a daily basis but simply recounts them as essential elements to the story without venturng into melodrama. The sheer scale of suffering and the numbers involved can often be hard to take in or comprehend, much like the astronomical numbers and distances when considering time and space, but the personal tragedy and individual stories of the characters here does more to bring home the appalling truth of those times than many a factual account ever could.The blend of German mythology and analogy interwoven into the narrative and those parts of the story told in flashback give the story an added dimention that works well, perfectly in sync with the younger characters and their part in the overall story. I would say also this last element, while not exactly traditional fairy tale stuff itself, does provide the reader a respite from the harrowing reality of past events, and time to pause and consider what they're reading. The scene transistions betweeen the past and present are skilfully handled and the subtle and occasional use of German dialogue adds to the authenticity of the writing, but without confusing non-German speaking readers given the obvious meaning and context when it is used.Although a work of fiction this is a well-researched and vivid account of an horrific and shameful period of what many would still consider to be relatively recent or modern history. This isn't a book that can be read lightly or as pure entertainment despite the intriguing and expertly crafted storyline. I must admit the historical elements, the mythology, and the central character's past had more impact for me than the present day aspects of the book, but every element of this story was superbly told and related well to all the others. I could easily visualise this book as a major film on a par with the likes of Schindler's List...

  • Lesley Hayes
    2019-02-20 00:59

    It seems strange to say ‘I really loved this’ about a book that is at times so harrowing a read – but I did. It is beautifully written, as well as being a carefully constructed narrative that keeps the reader completely engaged through both the first and the second part of the book. I won’t reiterate the synopsis as it gives any potential reader enough of an idea of what the overall story is about. Instead, I’d like to focus on the effect of the book, and the masterly way in which the author evokes pity, horror, disgust, apprehension, and ultimately a form of compassionate redemption. The final section brings together the strands left hanging at the end of the first part, when as readers we do not know the true outcome of Walt and Miriam’s tragic relationship in Auschwitz. There are certain questions that it takes the whole of the second half of the book to uncover, like a crossword with too few clues, or a jigsaw puzzle – an apt metaphor that is carried through in pursuing the meaning in the ‘enigmatic carving’ that is mentioned in the synopsis. There are also cleverly drawn parallels between the past and the present concerning the ethical dilemmas that arise in the keeping of secrets and the fear-based collusion with a bully, in whatever form he shows up. We are taken on an important journey throughout this novel, along with the characters themselves – a journey of insight for them as well as for us. And those characters are so real that I found myself constantly thinking: “This must be a true story” and then realising, moved to tears, that it is indeed the true story of so many individuals and families cursed by the evil actions and events that took place in Nazi extermination camps throughout The Holocaust. Rebecca Bryn holds nothing back in her stark, factual descriptions, and the deliberate lack of sentimental emotion in reporting those images make them all the more affecting – these atrocities really did occur, just as reported. The significance of the title becomes apparent at several points in the narrative, but most poignantly at the very end. There is so much that is explored in this book about abuse, betrayal, loyalty, forgiveness and the real meaning and intention of love that it would be impossible to itemise them – and would also feel like taking the wings off a butterfly. Read the book for yourself – be moved, as I was, and bear witness to the unbearable, keeping alight some flame of hope in your heart.

  • Robbi LeahFreeman
    2019-02-15 01:04

    One of the Best books on Nazi war I have read. Yes I seem to be reading them constantly these days. I've always been interested. I know my grand parents met at Russian/Polish border after WWI and moved to America. Their last name was Podhaski but when my grandfather was born, America couldn't understand Russian and mixed his entire name up, including last name Podgaysky, which he just kept. Plus with the world fighting today over religion, color, orientation, I guess I'm just trying to figure out how "people" could have done any of this and can we possibly learn from history to stop the hatred now. In this book you start with: Grandpa Walt, Gran, twins mother and twins Charlotte and Lucy. They adore their grandfather who treats them to treasure hunts, makes them wooden toys..the best grandpa award winner in my opinion but he suffers from nightmares from WWII but he doesn't talk to anyone about it, not even Gran. Then you have the concentration camp diary of Walt's that shows he worked in the woman's ward at A concentration camp. Chuck and a Jewish Nurse work together to keep a journal on the atrocities that occur in the camp. All sounds a bit confusing. But their is a puzzle in the book and learning about love and forgiveness. It is a fictional story based on true story but still well researched and a definite must read!

  • Zara-jo Palmer
    2019-02-15 01:48

    I had this book on pre-order cos I read The Silence of the Stones and loved it.It's beautiful and horrible both at the same time and I'm not sure how Rebecca did that.I've sent for two printed copies, one for me and one to pass round to friends - it's THAT good! Saying anymore would spoil it for everybody but DON'T MISS IT - and have you looked at her website? There's a load of stuff on there from her NEXT book and it is SO different.(Sorry I only just got round to writing this - I've been busy at work - they want to read it too cos they've seen me forget to eat lunch and I NEVER forget to eat - could somebody recommend a diet that doesn't mean cutting out chocolate?)

  • Frank Parker
    2019-02-10 22:07

    I have read a great number of excellent books since the start of this year. Some I have reviewed and given five stars. Others, because they were written some while ago and/or by acclaimed writers, I did not feel qualified to comment publicly upon. None of them surpasses Touching The Wire: for the quality of the writing, the complexity of the plot, the depth of the characters. The subject matter is the unspeakable horrors perpetrated in central Europe between 1940 and 1945. The theme is forgiveness.Not that either I or Ms. Bryn would dare to suggest that those responsible for such inhumanity deserve forgiveness. But it is possible, nay, necessary, to believe that among those who were motivated by pure evil there were some who hated what they were doing: did it only out of a belief that, by remaining alive, they might be able to work behind the scenes to protect some of the victims from some small part of the nightmare. Refusal meant death and with it the removal of that opportunity, however slight, to do some small measure of good in an environment of utmost evil.Given that context, it is inevitable that some of the passages in this book are painful to read. I have written elsewhere ( about the difficulties for an author writing about what I called, after Stephen Marcus, “inconceivable realities”. I cited Rachel Billingon's Glory (one of the books I feel unqualified to review, given Ms Billington's pedigree) and Jodi Picoult's The Story Teller.The former describes the ill-conceived and ill-fated invasion of Gallipoli by British and Commonwealth forces in 1915. The latter, like Touching The Wire, deals with the persecution of East European Jews, from the humiliations of the Warsaw Ghetto to the horrors of the extermination camps. Ms Bryn's novel covers a different aspect of the activities in those camps: the medical experiments conducted by the evil Dr Mengele, another set of inconceivable realities.Ms Bryn does not hold back from describing the inhuman cruelty to be found in the nightmare surroundings of Auschwitz. Her novel is told in two parts. In the first section a man who collaborated in those experiments is living under an assumed identity in England in the late 1970s and early 1980s. We follow him as he remembers his previous life and prepares clues he hopes will reveal the truth.The second part is set in the present day as his 40 year old grand-daughter follows those clues. The way Ms Bryn has constructed these clues will delight anyone who loves cryptic puzzles. This section also includes a failing marriage and the guilt that surrounds it and the flowering of new love. It ends with yet more harrowing revelations about the experiments as the unraveled clues reveal the truth.In my blog post I concluded by saying: “If reading fantasy horrors, watching zombie movies, or, indeed, the horrors of modern warfare shown nightly on our television screens, dulls our senses, then it is surely the duty of the writer of historical fiction to remind readers of the real horrors endured by ordinary people.” In Touching The Wire Ms Bryn has done just that. Her book is, rightly, dedicated “to the memory ... of all those who have suffered at the hand of tyranny.”At the end of my review of Ms Picoult's book I wrote: “This is a work of fiction, has the horror been overplayed? Will it be too easy for holocaust deniers to dismiss it because it is fiction? For anyone of my generation, old enough to have seen the newsreel footage of Auschwitz, Bergen-Belsen and Buchenwauld, Picoult's depiction of the events is all too believable. But, for younger generations for whom WW II is just another episode in history; people who love to revel in dark fantasies of zombies and vampires, will this be any more than mere entertainment?I went on to add: “This is history whose lessons we need to learn, although, as one of her characters remarks, subsequent events suggest we have yet to do so. It is also, at its core, a novel about the power of forgiveness. And the optimist in me cannot help but think that those same 'subsequent events' also demonstrate that forgiveness is possible though we forget at our peril.”The same remarks apply to Ms Bryn's novel. She aims to answer the question “must we live our lives plagued with guilt, or can we find the strength to forgive ourselves?” Forgiveness is necessary for peace of mind. To forget is to demean the sacrifice of those who endured the inconceivable realities of the past.

  • Ian Hunter
    2019-01-28 19:52

    Every once in a while I like to take a break from my usual fare of genre reads and pick up something literary, a drama that doesn’t fit into a genre. If the writing is superb enough and doesn’t make my brain bleed too much, I chalk these kinds of reads up not only to desperately needed soul food in a diet that often lacks the more enriching stuff, but to fun of a different kind. Touching the Wire is one of those books.The storytelling is powerful, and the memories it will leave you with will haunt you forever. Considering how many World War II movies I’ve seen and books I’ve read that cover the atrocities that took place in the German concentration camps, it ought to be hard to shock me on the subject. But because the author’s writing is so poignant, the concentration camp dramas for me were experienced at a level of intensity rarely before encountered. Mercifully, the author alternates between that horrific time and a more beautiful, poetic, present-day time, as the man who survived the concentration camps tries to compensate for that ugliness with a life of love, of family. He attempts to heal the past surrounding himself by all that is wonderful about life. The two contrasting timelines playing off one another shows us just how fragile our humanity is at the same time it shows us how enduring. Either storyline by itself would have made for one powerful drama, but interwoven as they are, the dramatic intensity is enhanced.But the two timelines do more than give us reprieve from one another. The old man at the heart of the story has a mission to complete if he is to redeem himself from the sins of the past, if his soul is to mend. Following along with him for that character arc adds no shortage of suspense and links even the more idyllic present with the more haunting past with a thriller-like tone that is shared by both stories. Recommended for folks who need a break from genre-fare and have an eye to the literary.

  • Tom Benson
    2019-02-23 21:07

    This is without doubt one of the best fictional tales of this type I’ve read. One of the main characters is brought to the reader in the modern day, complete with the nightmares of his past experiences in war-torn Germany. His demons are not confined to the night, so the narrative opens his mental sores to expose a myriad of deep secrets. His conscious mind is torn by day and night by vivid memories.I’ve read several factual accounts of the history which the author has used for the core of her story. Rebecca has included activities of not only Nazi soldiers, but also the prisoners themselves and the vile activities of one of the most hated mass-murderers of modern times; Dr Josef Mengele.I served in the modern Germany for many years and know the deep shame and regret that the more recent generations of German people feel for the actions of some of their forefathers.When you’ve walked around the mass graves of Bergen-Belsen and visited the Jewish History Museum of Berlin, or Amsterdam, you begin to sense the true horror of what happened to so many innocent people. They suffered and died needlessly.This story unwinds in two parts. The first half of the story takes us back and forward from present day to the horror. The constant rebounding enables us to see the atrocities through the eyes of a prisoner, who is also a doctor. It is he who must deal with his demons. The second part of the story is played out as a mystery/suspense which unfolds like the petals of a rose, one layer after another to a blossoming end. The dialogue is worked with an occasional translation, but this doesn’t affect the entertainment for the reader. Many scenes are of a graphic nature, so be prepared to be shocked. The imagery, like the dialogue is done extremely well. I congratulate Rebecca on not only her writing and storytelling prowess, but also her outstanding research.

  • Angela Lockwood
    2019-01-28 21:46

    Touching the wire is a story told in two parts. Part one is narrated by Walt, a grandfather of seven year old twins Charlotte and Lucy. He is plagued by the memories of his time as a doctor at Auschwitz. Through a number of flashbacks we find out about his struggle to keep patients alive and his blossoming love for a young Jewish woman; Miriam. Part two is told from the perspective of Charlotte, his granddaughter who we catch up with several years later. This book raises many interesting questions like; what are we willing to sacrifice to save the ones we love and is standing by without acting the same as giving consent? I liked the structure of the book and thought the telling of the story through flashbacks, diary entries and present day events worked well. The often harrowing details of camp life and medical experiments were handled sensitively although at times graphic. Horrendous things happened at Auschwitz and the author is justified in going into the gruesome details. We need to keep writing about the holocaust, so that younger generations will not forget.I liked the first part of the book very much and I got swept up in the budding romance against all odds of Walt/Chuck and Miriam. I did have some problems with the second part. We now have Charlotte narrating. She is a married woman with a complicated love life. I found the change of pace, setting and main character a little unsettling, but reading on I found myself being captivated by Charlotte’s quest to unearth her grandfather’s secrets.

  • Michelle Lynn
    2019-02-03 00:52

    I can't remember the last time a book touched me like this one. I've always been fascinated by the holocaust and read a lot of books with the goal of trying to see what makes a human being do the kinds of things the SS did. What makes someone so evil? Fear. That's basically what this book boils down to. It was my first time reading one about someone from the other side of the war, an SS doctor. He is not evil. In fact, he does everything he thinks he can to save those under his watch. But his fear kept him from doing more. Walt went through a lot during his time working at aushwitz. He was tasked with doctoring many who were destined to die anyway. I think the book called it one of Germany's great contradictions.Years, later his granddaughter is on a quest to learn the truth of his past using clues he has left and memories of those he once loved. What she discovers will change her entire world and make her question everything she knows about the man she so revered. The story features many flashback that create a heartbreaking look into life in the camp. It's hard to read but you can't tear your eyes away. The characters have such an astounding resilience. Even the SS doctor is endearing and you finding yourself rooting for him despite your desire to hate him. In these pages you fall in love and then find yourself broken again and again. I won't soon forget this book. The story is sure to haunt me.

  • B.L. Pride
    2019-02-09 00:46

    This is a book with so many different layers it seems impossible to include them all in a review and do them all justice. It is a deeply touching, deeply moving story that is difficult to read at times, but gripping, mercilessly engaging, and you simply cannot put it down.The setting and the historical background could be a double-edged sword in this case, since there have been so may works set in the time of World War II, but Bryn managed to create a masterpiece based on the eternal struggles of the human soul, the decisions, the burdens, and the memories that are forever in charge.I liked the structure of the book, and the fact that the intertwining of the past and the present felt natural, which is one of the things that prove Bryn is an outstanding author. But the technical elements of a book are never what convinces me that what I'm reading is a great work - it is the stories in the story that I want to feel, and when an author manages to combine so many intricately described and deeply disturbing events that are stories themselves into the main story, I am convinced I have chosen well.Touching the Wire challenges you to look deeper and think about questions that cannot be answered simply (if at all), which makes it a difficult book to read at times, but then again, the wire is all around us and only those who dared to touch it can claim to have lived.

  • Eric Lahti
    2019-02-15 01:50

    The story of the Holocaust is a terrifying reminder of what depths humans can plumb when they really set their minds to being evil. It's a loathsome, offensive story that should forever remain in our phyches. The numbers are staggering and the sheer industrialization of torture and murder is mind boggling.We all know this.The horrifying event has been the subject of many written works, both good and bad. It's the go-to source for hacks who want to shock and the first stop for anyone who wants to make you feel bad. In the hands of a mediocre writer you get a few tears, some shocks, and move on with your life.In the hands of a good writer, however, you find a compelling story. Instead of cardboard cutouts or caricatures you get people with all their inconsistencies and warts. A good writer can do the subject justice. Rebecca Bryn is a good writer and this is a good story. There is some of the shock and awe you would expect but rather than relying on the events to drive the story forward, she relies on the characters - their motivations and their sheer humanity - to drive the story forward. So what you wind up with is a story of people set during the Holocaust rather than a story of the Holocaust with some people in it.This is a triumphant first novel from a talented author who I sincerely hope will go on to write more.

  • Rita Chapman
    2019-02-10 19:47

    Harrowing. Horrifying. Powerful. Touching the Wire by Rebecca Bryn is a masterful and thought-provoking story, a truly amazing read.Rebecca Bryn is an outstanding author, her writing is of a high calibre and she is a wonderful story teller. Her writing transports you to the scene and immerses you in it. I wasn’t reading a story – I was there, living it, every second of it. It is horrific and shocking and will leave you wondering how such evil existed, but at the same time it is full of love and warmth – a true love story even amongst death. In Part II Rebecca whisks you in to the present time, to another love story and to a challenging mystery. Can Charlotte unravel her beloved grandfather’s past from the clues he has left and will she have the courage to divulge the truth?War crimes are not a subject I would normally choose to read about, but Touching the Wire - written to commemorate the seventieth anniversary of Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January 2015 - is not your normal war story. Rebecca has amazing talent: I can’t wait to read her other novel, Silence of the Stones.

  • Morgan Kelley
    2019-02-07 01:57

    5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular!, December 21, 2014By morgan - This review is from: TOUCHING THE WIRE: A doctor and nurse fight to save lives, and find love in a Nazi death-camp. Seventy years later the doctor's granddaughter, intrigued by an enigmatic carving, discovers the secrets (Kindle Edition)Where to begin?This was an amazing story.Immediately, i fell into the rhythm of the tale, and lost track of all time. Before long, i found myself toward the final pages, wishing it wouldn't end.That's the ONLY disappointing thing about this book. The author would have held my attention for a thousand more pages.Thank you, Rebecca Bryn for a spectacular story.It touched, moved, and delighted me, and in today's day and age, that's not an easy task.Now, please write more!You have a fan for life.

  • Claire
    2019-02-23 22:10

    This is a touching and very sensitively told story spanning many decades starting in the concentration camps of WW2. As a rule I don't enjoy war stories or their spin-offs but this was so carefully told without glossing over the details but also without revelling in them I found myself thoroughly enjoying it despite it's subject matter. Congratulations to the Author Rebecca Bryn for creating such an emotional and spiritual account of a very painful subject. Highly recommended.

  • Tehila
    2019-02-10 19:03

    I found the beginning of this book difficult to read, but too compelling to put quit. About one third of the way in, the pace picked up. The end of the book was a total surprise to me; expected it to go in an entirely different direction.I expect to reread the first and last sections, although not immediately.I read a free kindle version of this book; my review was not solicited.

  • John Grimes
    2019-02-18 00:04

    Touching the wireThis is a great book about one of the worse times in human history, it's about love and survival and eventual justice. A lovely story that keeps the pages turning from start to finish.

  • Laura Beal
    2019-02-05 21:58

    The first book of 2017 I just could not let go of until it was done.

  • Mary
    2019-01-27 01:15

    No words...moving and devastating...

  • Nurse
    2019-02-12 01:48

    Rarely do I ever write anything after I have finished a book. I usually just rate it with stars. This book deeply moved me.

  • Sreelata Menon
    2019-02-22 18:11

    A superbly written book!

  • Bev Walkling
    2019-02-23 18:02

    This is not an easy book to read, but it is worth the effort. More review to follow.

  • Cara
    2019-01-24 23:14

    A powerful novel, centred around the medical facilities in Auschwitz and Mengele’s experiments, tells of a love story between a doctor and the nurse he saved from the gas chamber. This relationship has consequences for Charlotte and Lucy, identical twins who are the granddaughters of Walt, a man who is tortured with nightmares and guilt. Walt leaves a wooden carving of the Flames of Death and a letter that prompts Charlotte to follow clues to find the 4 related carvings and solve the mystery of her grandfather’s past. Touching the Wire has 2 narratives; the doctor (Chuck), and Miriam’s experiences in Auschwitz, and Charlotte’s quest to uncover the truth of her grandfather Walt’s past. The horrors of the Holocaust are viewed through Chuck and Miriam’s diary and Chuck’s experiences as a doctor serving under Mengele. Alongside this, we follow the disintegration of Charlotte’s marriage while she searches for her grandfather’s carvings with the help of Adam, a researcher at Imperial War Museum. The book is part historical, part mystery, as the carvings provide clues to the truth of what lies behind Walt’s nightmares.This is a different take on the Holocaust as Touching the Wire is a story of guilt, lost love and the need to reveal the cruel truth of Auschwitz to the world. The 2 narratives are closely entwined to give us clues for the final revelation, which provides us with the answers we guessed at throughout. I found this book to be a gripping read, as the mystery deepened I found it almost impossible to stop reading even as my eyes closed with the need for sleep.