« Hitler, my neighbor », by the The New Yorker

Hitler, My Neighbor, by Edgar Feuchtwanger with Bertil Scali, translated from the French by Adriana Hunter (Other Press). In this disquieting coming-of-age story, narrated in the voice of the author’s childhood self, Feuchtwanger unfolds the surreal tale of the decade he spent living across the street from Hitler’s Munich apartment, from 1929 to 1939. Born to proudly German secular Jews, he had barely grasped that he was Jewish before he heard that Jews were evil and not really German. He can’t wrap his mind around the contradictions, but neither can many adults. Illuminating how it was possible for so many to be so confused is the book’s great achievement; young Edgar, seeing his famous neighbor frequently around town, can hardly believe that he truly means what he says on the radio.

Minneapolis Star Tribune : A fascinating account about Hitler’s rise to power from the perspective of his young Jewish neighbor.
Revue de presse / 15 décembre 2017

By MALCOLM FORBES Until his retirement in 1989, Edgar Feuchtwanger spent his professional adult life teaching and writing about German history. However, as a child in Munich he witnessed German history in the making, being caught up in, and nearly churned up by, the tumultuous events that convulsed the country and propelled it toward war. “Hitler, My Neighbor: Memories of a Jewish Childhood, 1929-1939” is a unique account of the rise of a regime, the moral decline of a nation, and one family’s desperate battle for survival. When the book opens in 1929, Feuchtwanger is 5. The only son of German-Jewish parents, he is a typical happy-go-lucky boy: he plays outdoors, loves Mickey Mouse and enjoys sunny family vacations. But slowly his days become overcast, for in that same year, Adolf Hitler moves into the building across the road. At home young Edgar begins to hear words like “Jew,” “war” and “Hitler.” Rosie, his nanny, draws the curtains when she catches him spying on his neighbor, or forces him to walk faster when passing his house. One night Edgar dreams that “the man opposite turns into an ogre, he catches us and wants to eat us.” Feuchtwanger takes us through…