I Kiss Your Hands Many Times is a non-fictional story, spanning prewar and post World War II. It is the story of Marianne Szegedy-Maszák’s parents and other family, members, and how they went from riches to basic poverty during the most horrific of times.
Initially there seemed to be a sense of denial that events were actually happening, and the family stayed, rather than emigrate. Whether through ignorance or denial regarding the entirety of the situation, the family felt they were being noble in their choice. Many individuals felt the same way during World War II, and they were not the only ones. This decision proved to be one that contributed to their eventual and negative fate.
Szegedy-Maszak’s father was a well off man, who was arrested and sent to Dachau. Her mother was the granddaughter of a Jewish aristocrat, a man who owned several factories. Those very factories were used as collateral in order for her mother and family members to escape death and enable them to emigrate to Portugal.
Szegedy-Maszák details with vivid word imagery and intense prose the extremes to which the Nazis went to in order to overtake Hungary.
There is a lot of historical information within the pages, information that is not only relevant to the time period, the war, and the events that occurred, but information that is extremely important documentation.
The book details a series of letters written between both Szegedy-Maszak’s parents, and the defining moments of their experiences during the Holocaust. Throughout all of the atrocities, their love survived, and they were eventually married in Budapest, after liberation.
The book is an intense look at the Hungarian situation during the war, and how it affected Szegedy-Maszak’s family, and their future together. It is an inspiring love story and one that depicts the face of survival under extreme odds.