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“A Guest At The Shooter’s Banquet” Book Talk

Author Rita Gabis comes from a family of Eastern European Jews and Lithuanian Catholics. She was close to her Catholic grandfather as a child, but as an adult, she discovered an unthinkable dimension to her family story: from 1941 to 1943, her grandfather had been the chief of police under Gestapo leadership in the Lithuanian town of Svencionys, near Poligon, where eight thousand Jews were murdered in three days in 1941.

In 1942, the local Polish population was also hunted down. Gabis’ exploration into this truth of who her grandfather was and what he had done resulted in her memoir, A Guest at the Shooter’s Banquet. Built around interviews from four countries and filled with original scholarship, the book documents the Holocaust by bullets and chronicles Gabis’ journey to learn all she could about her grandfather. 

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