The List is not a Holocaust story. Its protagonists, Georg and Edith Fleischer, are not even Holocaust survivors in the strictest sense of the term. They are among the lucky ones – Jews who escaped Europe in time. But this, of course, does not mean they are unscarred. The list of the title is the register of names of family members that they cross off, one by one, as their fates come to light. This, too, can be considered “lucky”: Discovering how a parent, sibling, cousin or friend died, however horrific the circumstances, is better than never learning their fate.
Fletcher, best-known as NBC’s Tel Aviv bureau chief
of more than three decades, writes in the author’s note that this is not the
story of his parents. Nonetheless, he gave the main characters their names, and
like the characters in the book, Edith and George Fletcher (once Edith and Georg
Fleischer) were refugees from Austria who lived in London.