Reviews and Reactions        

Here are some comments on Just One from reviewers and readers. If you'd like to add your voice, please send your comments.

"With her gifts as a storyteller and as a terrific writer, Esther Erman has transformed the experiences and tales of her family into a compelling, moving, life-filled novel. Through the struggles, joys, and sorrows of one family, she has given us a novel that captures the experience of European Jewry in the last century. This book is a remarkable achievement."
     -- Arthur Kurzweil, author of From Generation to Generation: How to Trace Your Jewish Genealogy & Family History

"At a time when there are increasingly fewer witnesses to tell the youngest generation about the Shoah, it is important that there be ways of conveying the facts without either sugarcoating them or making them impossible for the young to assimilate. … Esther Erman brings the past to life in an accessible way. … She brings to life the relationship between three generations of women who are familiar to all of us. … This is a story that rings true, especially to those who grew up with or near survivors. … This is a novel that would…be welcome in any library to give insight into the Holocaust and survivor generation.
  -- Association of Jewish Libraries Newsletter, V. XXIII, No. 2 (Nov/Dec, 2003).

"Full of rich and often painful Jewish history,...folklore and...customs. ... Convincing and absorbing in its details of Jewish life, this story makes for fascinating reading."
  -- Romantic Times Bookclub

"Just One is both heartwarming and heart-wrenching. This fictionalized account of a true life story takes you right into the home of a young family making a new start in America after the horror of the Holocaust. Young Esther wants so badly to fit in with her classmates; her mother needs to cope with tragedies that readers cannot begin to imagine.
    There is much Holocaust literature available but this stands apart in its spiritual side as Esther finds comfort in the presence of her grandmother, for whom she is named. It is beautifully written -- you'll swear that you can smell the cooking -- and emotionally honest. Children of survivors will recognize themselves in Esther Erman's poignant scenes.
     I recommend this powerful book. It is at times brutally hard to read, but always gripping, and ultimately there is a sense of survival, achievement, and victory."
  -- J.N., New Jersey

"... how deeply moved I was to read your book. It has been a long time since I have been truly captivated by a novel. ... You truly are the keeper of [your mother’s] stories on many levels and honor her by so beautifully retelling them."
  -- R.S., social worker, Florida

"Just One is such a beautiful book. I dampened so many pages with tears. Your writing is beautiful."
  -- M.D., California

"This isn't the type of book I would normally pick off a shelf because I don't like historicals. I like science fiction mostly. I'm glad I read it. I would tell my friends to read this book. I liked it so much that I made time to read it."
  -- S.F., 13 years old, California

"I just want you to know how much I'm enjoying your book. ... There are many books I've begun and not continued to read, but yours keeps pulling me."
  -- L.B., California

"I loved it. Both my husband’s parents are sole survivors of their respective families, and it helped me better understand them."
  -- M.K., California

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© 2003-4 Esther Gerstenfeld Erman