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The Ghost Tattoo

Nonfiction: Biography
Unabridged   6.5 hour(s)
Publication date: 09/26/2023

The Ghost Tattoo

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Digital Download ISBN:9781696610582


A powerful, profoundly moving Holocaust memoir from a rarely told perspective, this is the story of a family coming to terms with its long-hidden wartime secrets—and a son discovering the Faustian bargain his Jewish father made with the Nazis in order to survive.

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Product Description

Growing up, Tony Bernard knew that his father, Henry, had been in Nazi concentration camps during World War II. He was familiar with the tattoo bearing his Auschwitz number—B1224—and the scar resulting from a suicide attempt while in a camp in Blizyn. As an Australian boy growing up on Sydney's Northern Beaches where Henry was a well-respected doctor, Tony simply accepted these facts. Only as a young man, on a trip to Poland with his father, did he begin to uncover the secrets that filled Henry with regret, anguish, and guilt.

Henry's experiences in the concentration camps were harrowing, and he survived through ingenuity, grit, and countless miracles of chance. Yet there was another, deeper story—of what happened before his deportation to the camps. In 1940, Henry was recruited into the Jewish Order Service in his Polish hometown—an organization set up by the Nazis to help maintain order among Jews. Like many other young recruits, Henry believed he would help protect his community. Instead, the ghetto police, as they became known, were forced to assist the Nazis in the subjugation and mistreatment of their own people. Faced daily with impossible choices, desperate to keep his loved ones alive, Henry was both victim and unwilling participant.

The Ghost Tattoo is a haunting, emotionally resonant memoir of war and its aftermath.


"This extraordinary narrative is a powerful instance of the transgenerational impact of the Holocaust, but, above all, a remarkable examination of the position of a Ghetto Policeman and the guilt he carried, if he survived, into later life." —Thomas Keneally, New York Times bestselling author of Schindler's List

Author Bio

Tony Bernard is an emergency doctor at Northern Beaches Hospital and Mona Vale Hospital in Sydney, Australia.