Helen Epstein writes literary non-fiction and is the co-founder of Plunkett Lake Press E-books (www.plunkettlakepress.com
). Her books are rigorously
documented but in their blend of biography, autobiography and
history, the private domain and the public record, they often read
In 1979, her first book Children of the Holocaust quickly became a
classic that was subsequently translated into French, German, Italian,
Czech, Swedish and Japanese. "An enormous achievement," wrote the Chicago Tribune. "Heart-wrenching and unforgettable." The book, with a new preface, a new cover by Rochelle Rubinstein, and an updated bibliography is now available on Kindle along with Helen's other books.
Other readers came to know Helen's work in the
1970s when she worked as a freelance for the Sunday New York Times Magazine and Arts &
Leisure Section. Her profiles of extraordinary musicians are available
in Music Talks, which includes portraits of the late Vladimir Horowitz, Dorothy DeLay and Leonard
Bernstein. "Informative, perceptive, lively and accurate." wrote
pianist and music educator Gary Graffman. This book is now available on Helen's Kindle page.
Helen wrote the only in-depth
profile of legendary art historian Meyer Schapiro, and the only full-length biography of not-for-profit theater icon Joseph Papp. "The portrait that finally emerges," wrote the critic for the front-page New York
Times Sunday Book Review, "might have been jointly painted by Goya,
Whistler and Francis Bacon." Playwright Tony Kushner called Papp "one
of the very few heroes this tawdry, timid business has produced" and
the book, a "nourishing and juicy biography."
Born in Prague and raised speaking Czech in the Czech emigre community
of post-war New York City, Helen was always fascinated by that culture.
She wrote about it in her memoir Where She Came From: A Daughter's Search for her
Mother's History, a major contribution to both Jewish family history
and the social history of Central European women. "Epstein's odyssey
takes us right into the heart of the Motherland, the source of all
women's stories," wrote Hope Edelman. "Exhaustively researched and
vividly narrated." Gloria Steinem wrote: "In Epstein's hands, truth
becomes not only stranger than fiction but more magnetic."
interested in the history of the Czech lands also have read her
translation of Heda Kovaly's memoir of life under Nazism and
Stalinism titled Under a Cruel Star.
In addition to writing, Helen
Epstein taught journalism for twelve years at New York
University and serves as a mentor to dozens of former students. She
left NYU in 1986 to write full-time but continues to teach at MFA
writing programs and at her own Family History Writing Workshops. She
also guest lectures frequently on the subjects of memoir, family
history, European Jews and transcending trauma.
NEW! You can now download all of Helen's work on Kindle and Nook. Click here for Helen's Kindle page.