I Have My Mother’s Eyes: A Holocaust Memoir Across Generations

I Have My Mother's Eyes

I Have My Mother’s Eyes

A Holocaust Memoir Across Generations

by Barbara Ruth Bluman


  • Spring 2009
  • ISBN 978-1-55380-070-5
  • 6″ x 9″ Trade Paperbacks, 126 pages
  • Holocaust Memoir

This Holocaust memoir crosses generations. In I Have My Mother’s Eyes, Barbara Ruth Bluman chronicles her mother’s dramatic journey from Nazi-occupied Poland to western British Columbia, where her legacy lives on.

Bluman sets an urgent and intimate tone as she follows Zosia Hoffenberg from her genteel upbringing in Warsaw through the shock of the blitzkrieg and on to her escape from Europe through Lithuania, the Soviet Union and Japan. That escape required the help of Chiune Sugihara, the Japanese consul in Lithuania, who defied his superiors and helped several thousand Jews to flee.

Bluman also reveals how, even as she was recording her mother’s tale of survival, cancer was ravaging her own body. In this interwoven narrative, Bluman explains how she garnered strength from her mother’s account as a refugee, “staring death in the face.” These twin narratives blossom out of salvaged journal entries and letters, and from the photographs of family members who have reunited after years of displacement. Bluman’s daughter Danielle Low brings this double memoir to a conclusion.

A celebration of the universal struggle for survival, I Have My Mother’s Eyes offers a hopeful response to one of history’s darkest times.

“A sensitive, beautifully written narrative of how a second generation woman comes to grips with her mother’s survival of the Holocaust. Ms Bluman’s brave personal fight with terminal cancer brings her very close to her mother here, providing a uniquely emotional lens for a survival narrative. I highly recommend this book.”
— Dr. Graham Forst, Co-founder, VHEC Symposium on the Holocaust

Other Holocaust Memoirs from Ronsdale Press:



“Zosia’s story, the main one, is well worth reading. . . . I would certainly recommend this book.”
Prairie Fire

“[Bluman’s] writing is intensely sympathetic and it’s easy to see how the anguish of the Holocaust has filtered down through the generations.”
The Buzz

“Barbara Bluman recounts her mother’s incredible story of survival and resilience in Nazi-occupied Europe, highlighting the struggles both she and her father endured.” — Canadian Literature