In 1996 the book `Kaddish for Daisy was published. It was the debut novel of Simon Hammelburg concerning victims of the Holocaust and their children; a moving book about the second generation of war victims. The book received some critical acclaim but disappeared from bookshops shortly after publication and has not been available until now. Over a period of 18 years, Simon Hammelburg has continued to refine the original manuscript. Now the time has come to publish the final version in Dutch and English.
The protagonist loses his wife in a car crash and while in mourning, he revisits places where together, they had found happiness. During this journey he connects with his peers, his brother and parents. Hammelburg not only describes these meetings but focuses on the many conversations held about the persecution in the camps, the need to stay in hiding, the hope for a new life in Israel and the loneliness in a post-war Europe too busy with its reconstruction. The tragedy of the Holocaust becomes tangible for those who have to live on.
`I know all about it Daisy. And yet I cannot get angry. On the outside they have survived the Holocaust but inside, almost everything is broken and this shows on the outside. Not very pleasant but theres nothing to be done about it.
`The power lies not so much in the inevitable anguish of the testimonials but more in the directness of a conversation between friends about something that cannot be captured in words by strangers.- Trouw Newspaper
`A liberation, moving one to tears. - NRC Newspaper