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girl left behind

I was just five years old in 1969 when my mother and father, both physicians in Hungary, packed the family car for what was supposed to be a vacation to Vienna. Only this was no vacation. They were escaping our country's totalitarian government. The tourist visas that would give them passage across the East-West divide came at a high price. To make sure they returned, one of two children would have to be left behind. I was that child.

In reading my story, you will find that it has great relevance for our time. 


Browse through this website to enhance your reading experience. Note the photos of me as a little girl, both sad and resilient, trying to make sense of my family's disappearance.


The book is now available for purchase at your local book store or any of the sites below.


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"A gripping, heartbreaking, and strikingly beautiful memoir of the immigrant experience."

--William Dameron

Author of The Lie: A Memoir of Two Marriages,

Catfishing and Coming  Out

"A story full of heartache ... which celebrates the strength of the human spirit and the will to survive. It is a book for anyone who has lost someone they loved, or even anyone who never has, but fears the experience. In short—this is a book for everyone.”

--Elizabeth Cohen

Author of The Family on Beartown Road:

A Memoir of Love and Courage

"A lyrical, soul-rending, sumptuous book! It captures the heart and mind of a Hungarian girl who is sad and brave at the same time as she tries to make sense of what looks like her family’s desertion."

--Daniel Asa Rose

Author of Hiding Places: A Father and His Sons

Retrace Their Family’s Escape from the Holocaust,

and other books

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