Over seventy years had passed since Mira Unreich was freed from a concentration camp in Germany. On that spring day in 1945, she found herself alive, against all odds. In the decades that followed, she never explained the mystery underpinning her survival. How could Mira say that in the Holocaust ‘I learned about the goodness of people’?
Mira’s journalist daughter Rachelle realised time was running out for Mira, who was ill with cancer. Thus, she resolved to ask her mother questions. It would be the most important interview of her life: a chance to discover the secrets to her mother’s joy. It was also an opportunity to fit together the jigsaw puzzle pieces of her own life. Mira’s words would lead Rachelle along a surprising path, where she learned for the first time what a truly extraordinary life her mother had led.
In this episode Gregory Dobbs chats to Rachelle Unreich about her new book, A Brilliant Life and her mother’s idyllic childhood interrupted by war. As well as the time spent in concentration camps, including Auschwitz, and Mira’s incredible capacity to survive and to thrive despite the horrors of her past.
Praise for A Brilliant Life
‘A delicate, evocative story of strength and survival that turns on one of the most powerful forces in the known universe: a mother’s love.’ JONATHAN FREEDLAND – bestselling author of The Escape Artist
Rachelle Unreich started her journalism career when she was completing her Arts/Law degrees at Monash University. She also studied writing at UCLA. Rachelle has been a journalist for 38 years, writing cover stories for The Age, Harper’s Bazaar, marie claire, Rolling Stone and others. She has had regular columns in the Sydney Morning Herald, the Herald Sun and Elle magazine. Most recently Rachelle has published her novel, A Brilliant Life. Her work has appeared extensively in Australia, the US, UK and South-East Asia. Rachelle has lived in New York, Los Angeles, and Sydney. She currently lives in Melbourne.