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Castles in the Sky by Anita Cukier

Castles in the Sky

by Anita Cukier

150 pages
Haunted by a lost secret, Anita searches for clues in memories of her childhood and the stories she was told, including her parentsí harrowing experiences in Auschwitz.

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Category: Memoir
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About the Book
When Anita discovered that her mother had kept a secret from her for her entire life, it changed everything. Castles in the Sky is a journey through the past as Anita searches for answers in her memories and the stories she was told. Part memoir and part retelling of her parentsí experiences, including their harrowing time in Auschwitz, Anita reflects on the nature of identity and what it means to be a Jew born in Poland or a Polish Jew. It is about an only child, who grew up with parents who were both Holocaust survivors.

The narrative spans the lives of Anita and her parents, from her time as a child in communist Poland, entranced by her magical storytelling mother, to finding her own way in the USA. Castles in the Sky explores Anitaís changing relationship with a mother who created her own world to deal with her trauma and a father who was resilient and happy on the surface, but wracked by nightmares and guilt beneath. The deeper Anita delves into her past, the more she realizes that her search is intertwined with the breakdown of her relationship with her mother and her motherís inner conflicts. As her obsession with the secret becomes more intense, Anita comes to realizations that have implications far beyond herself and her family.



About the Author
Anita Cukier was born in Poland. She spent her childhood and received her early education under communist rule in what was then the Polish People's Republic. Anita left Poland for Australia in 1961. She attended Mac Robertson Girls High School in Melbourne, then went on to Toorak Teachers College. She worked as a primary school teacher until moving to the United States in 1969 with her husband, Aron. She received a B.S. degree in Education from Brooklyn College, and holds a Master's in Liberal Education from Lake Forest College. She worked towards a Ph.D. in Polish literature at the University of Illinois, Chicago, with some courses at Northwestern University. She lives in Lake Forest, Illinois, a small town north of Chicago. She is married, has three children and nine grandchildren.



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