The Happiest Man on Earth
Books | Biography & Autobiography / Historical
WINNER OF THE ABIA BIOGRAPHY OF THE YEAR 2021Life can be beautiful if you make it beautiful. It is up to you.Eddie Jaku always considered himself a German first, a Jew second. He was proud of his country. But all of that changed in November 1938, when he was beaten, arrested and taken to a concentration camp.Over the next seven years, Eddie faced unimaginable horrors every day, first in Buchenwald, then in Auschwitz, then on a Nazi death march. He lost family, friends, his country. Because he survived, Eddie made the vow to smile every day. He pays tribute to those who were lost by telling his story, sharing his wisdom and living his best possible life. He now believes he is the 'happiest man on earth'. Published as Eddie turns 100, this is a powerful, heartbreaking and ultimately hopeful memoir of how happiness can be found even in the darkest of times.SHORTLISTED FOR THE ABA NIELSEN BOOK BOOKSELLERS' CHOICE - ADULT NON-FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR 2021 SHORTLISTED FOR THE INDIE BOOK AWARDS FOR NON-FICTION 2021LONGLISTED FOR MATT RICHELL AWARD FOR NEW WRITER OF THE YEAR 2021Praise for The Happiest Man on Earth'This simple, moving account of a remarkable life offers plenty to think about and reflect on . . . Highly recommended.' Canberra Weekly'I have never met Eddie Jaku, but having read his book I feel like I have made a new friend . . . This is a beautiful book by a truly amazing man.' Daily Telegraph'A reminder of the power of love, kindness and hope . . . A life-affirming story, beautifully told.' Sydney Morning Herald'Jaku's memoir can be our private celebration of evil that was ultimately vanquished.' Country Style'His tale is compelling and particularly pertinent as we struggle to make sense of challenging times.' Weekend Post'He acknowledges suffering but resists being defined by it, adhering instead to his philosophy of choosing a radical form of humanity, a resistance both potent and infectious.' Australian Book Review'What an amazing, beautiful human' Magda Szubanski'A beautiful soul' Lisa Wilkinson'Eddie is a human diamond, and his story of survival, hope and the importance of kindness is what the world needs now.' Zoë Foster Blake
Macmillan Publishers Aus.
Community ReviewsSee all
"The story of Holocaust survivor (and centenarian) Eddie Jaku. There are so many good books from Jewish survivors and this is yet another. In light of what is going on today, it’s a good time to read…Eddie was excited to see/hear from Russia who were coming to help him, a German. He also talks about his fears of what will happen to these stories when the last few survivors pass on…highly recommend this read!"
"Beautifully written. Read it in one sitting. Gives his account of his time in WW2 as a Jew, and the lessons he’s learned from that experience. I’d recommend this to anyone. Please please read if you have the chance! "
"This book will take you through all the emotions. An important read during this time in our world and a reminder of the importance of standing up to the evils in our society. A short read with a big impact. One of my favourite books. Highly recommend! "
"The story was beautifully written that encaptured a theme that I think everyone should supplement in their lives!"