The True Story of Hansel and Gretel

  • by Louise Murphy
  • Narrated by Michael Page
  • 9 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In the last months of the Nazi occupation of Poland, two children are left by their father and stepmother to find safety in a dense forest. Because their real names will reveal their Jewishness, they are renamed "Hansel" and "Gretel". They wander in the woods until they are taken in by Magda, an eccentric and stubborn old woman called "witch" by the nearby villagers. Magda is determined to save them, even as a German officer arrives in the village with his own plans for the children.
Combining classic themes of fairy tales and war literature, Louise Murphy's haunting novel of journey and survival, of redemption and memory, powerfully depicts how war is experienced by families and especially by children. The True Story of Hansel and Gretel tells a resonant, riveting story.

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What the Critics Say

"Lyrical, haunting, unforgettable." (Kirkus, Starred Review)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Rated R for violence & rape

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

People who aren't bothered by awful details about a child being raped


Has The True Story of Hansel and Gretel turned you off from other books in this genre?

No, I love historical fiction.


If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The True Story of Hansel and Gretel?

I would cut out the gruesome language & unnecessary details about the awful things that happened in the book.


Any additional comments?

Not for people who like to keep their entertainment PG13. I felt like I lost a bit of my innocence.

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- Cayla

Gripping. Haunting. Poweful

I was drawn into the world and the lives of a small village of Polish peasants impoverished and brutalized by war. A place surrounded by a primeval and richly beautiful forest where the daily aspects of sacrifice, horror, fear and the power of love are played out. And of two Jewish children rescued and taken in by an outcast "witch" named Magda..
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- James D. Moenke "geronimocola"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-09-2014
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio