Jeffrey Gingold, a Milwaukee native and author of two books about multiple sclerosis, digs into his family’s past with the true account Tunnel, Smuggle, Collect: A Holocaust Boy (Henschelhaus, July). The boy in this case is Gingold’s father, Sam. At age 7, he is small enough to squeeze through secret tunnels in the walled-in Warsaw ghetto to trade jewelry and clothing for food and medicine.
Later, in the gray light of day, Sam collects the bodies of those lost to starvation, beatings and bullets. Although the book’s emotional moments are sometimes too quiet, the narrative is strongest when Gingold recounts the ways his characters look out for one another, especially Sam and his baby brother.
“Even when they have nothing themselves,” their mother says, “people are so kind.”