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Mouth of Truth

Mouth of Truth

Buried Secrets

By Lillian Boraks-Nemetz

Mouth of Truth is a gripping account of impossible choices , divided loyalties and unimaginable horrors. Batya Lightenberg , a Canadian wife and mother tries to live a normal life in oblivion of her troubled past while carrying a legacy of guilt and buried secrets inherited partly from her father, a successful lawyer, turned Jewish policeman in the Warsaw Ghetto. Compelled by a need to unearth the truth about her family, Batya sets out for Eastern Canada, Italy and Poland on a mission of discovery and healing.


Guernica Editions (Essential Prose Series)


254 pages |

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Mouth of Truth is a work of great insight and fine delicacy about the human condition, all the while paying particular attention to how men and women and children deal with the trauma of suffering, dislocation, and death.

John Robert Colombo, Author

Mouth of Truth represents an important contribution to the field and engages—with such eloquence, insight and sensitivity—with timely questions related to Holocaust memory, the transmission of trauma across generations, and the complexity of roles and responsibilities in a moral universe upended.

Nina Krieger, Executive Director, Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre

A profoundly sad and deeply moving story...very engaging and extremely well written.

Graeme J. Taylor, University of Toronto


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About the author

Lillian Boraks-Nemetz was born in Warsaw, Poland, and is a child survivor of the Holocaust. She escaped from the Warsaw Ghetto and spent the remainder of the war in hiding under a false identity. Boraks-Nemetz graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Masters Degree in Comparative Literature. She is an author of an award winning novel The Old Brown Suitcase followed by The Sunflower Diary and the Lenski File, as well as two volumes of poetry Ghost Children and Garden of Steel. She has translated Polish Emigre poetry into English and has also co-compiled the YA anthology of Canadian Holocaust writing, Tapestry of Hope. From 1980-2016, Boraks-Nemetz worked at the University of British Columbia’s Writing Center. She often speaks to students about the consequences of racism, as a member of the Holocaust Center’s Outreach Program. She is a board member of the Janusz Korczak Association of Canada. She lives and works in Vancouver.