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  • Published: 2 August 2022
  • ISBN: 9781787634077
  • Imprint: Bantam Press
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $35.00

In My Grandfather's Shadow

A story of war, trauma and the legacy of silence




Fusing memoir, psychology and a historical detective story, a powerful exploration of how trauma can be handed down through the generations.

Having wrestled for decades with an inexplicable sense of guilt, Angela Findlay eventually turned to her German roots in the hope of finding answers. There, she discovered three generations knotted together by events that took place in Nazi Germany: a grandfather who was a decorated general on the Eastern Front, his daughter and granddaughter - Angela herself. In a rare confluence of memoir, psychology and historical detective story, Findlay's unflinching quest for the truth about her grandfather breaks through the silence surrounding many the Second World War's perpetrators. In My Grandfather's Shadow explores the heritability of unresolved experiences, questions deeply held perceptions of good and bad, and uncovers the lesser-known history of the war's losers, a post-war culture of apology and atonement, and the lingering legacy of shame. Using her own family story to explore an episode in history that continues to appal and fascinate, Findlay reveals that it is possible not only for the scars of trauma to be handed down through generations, but also for them to be healed.

  • Published: 2 August 2022
  • ISBN: 9781787634077
  • Imprint: Bantam Press
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $35.00

Praise for In My Grandfather's Shadow

A compelling journey through guilt and shame that asks fundamental and painful questions about the extent of a family member's participation in one of the biggest crimes of the 20th century.

Derek Niemann, author of A Nazi in the Family

[A] remarkable memoir .... It's a powerful investigation into the individual personal cost that results from wider history, and the ways in which inherited guilt and trauma can leave scars across generations.

Caroline Sanderson, The Bookseller

This is an absolutely extraordinary book. In peeling back the layers of her family history, Angela Findlay reveals a vast, hidden European story that few nations have ever been brave enough to confront.

Keith Lowe, Sunday Times bestselling author of Savage Continent: Europe in the Aftermath of World War II

A page turner of the highest calibre! Meticulously researched, searingly honest and beautifully written, this timely book is a salient reminder of how intergenerational relationships connect threads between past and present. The author skillfully excavates her grandfather's life putting the family puzzle together piece by piece to create a forensic and fascinating portrait of the past. Her book gives new meaning to the prescient words of psychoanalyst, Roger Woolger: 'It is the responsibility of the living to heal the dead. Otherwise their unfinished business will continue to play out in our fears, phobias and illnesses.

Marina Cantacuzino, Author and founder of The Forgiveness Project

An unflinching exploration of shame and pain passed between generations. This is a powerful and important book which will change the way in which we understand ourselves.

Emma Craigie, author of Hitler's Last Day

This is a moving and powerful memoir that illuminates the extraordinary power of unprocessed trauma as it passes through generations, and how when it is faced it can be healed.

JULIA SAMUEL, author of Every Family Has a Story, Grief Works and This Too Shall Pass

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