New memoir by Anne Frank’s girlhood friend reveals ‘life outside the attic’

by | Jun 14, 2023 | Religion

JERUSALEM (RNS) — When Dina Kraft read “Anne Frank: the Diary of a Young Girl” as a teenager in the 1980s, she felt an instant connection with the vivacious young Jewish girl who chronicled her life while hiding from the Nazis in a secret attic in Amsterdam.After discovering the Franks’ hiding place, the Nazis sent them to the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. Later, Anne and her sister, Margot, were transferred to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, where they died of typhus and starvation.
“Anna seemed like someone who would be my friend. She was a chatterbox and got in trouble for talking in class. She seemed vibrant and personable and real,” said Kraft, using the name Anne herself used. When Kraft learned of her fate, “I felt bereft, like I had lost a friend.”
The famous diary resonated with Kraft for another reason: Her grandparents fled from Europe to New Zealand with Kraft’s mother, then an infant, in 1939, as the Nazis were advancing across Europe.   
So when Kraft, a Tel Aviv-based journalist, was asked to co-author the memoir of Hannah Pick-Goslar, a dear childhood friend of Anne Frank and a survivor of Bergen-Belsen, she leapt at the opportunity. The resulting book, “My Friend Anne Frank,” was released on June 6.  
Hannah (Hanneli) Pick-Goslar holding a photo of Anne Frank. Photo © Eric Sultan
Sadly, Pick-Gosla …

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