With her demons

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and forces her to deal with her own demons. De­spite con­sult­ing her mother, hus­band and friend, Katin is still adamant that al­low­ing her son to live in Ber­lin would be like “hand­ing him over to the wolves” be­cause the ground in Ber­lin is “soaked with the blood of the Jews”.

A lit­tle later, Katin has her work ex­hib­ited at the Jewish Mu­seum of Ber­lin and once again finds her­self strug­gling to ac­cept that Ger­many is a changed na­tion.

For­tu­nately, not all of Let­ting It Go is grim.

The way Katin de­picts her­self in the book is rather en­dear­ing, as she is com­pletely naked – both lit­er­ally and fig­u­ra­tively. She doesn’t deny her mis­con­cep­tions nor does she hide her some­what neu­rotic re­ac­tions. In one part, she shame­lessly shares her su­per­fi­cial needs when try­ing to look per­fect for the mu­seum gala.

She even doc­u­ments how her for­mer lover, a Turk­ish poet, called her “clue­less” for “never hav­ing a re­al­is­tic grasp” of things.

Katin draws her mother out to be the loveli­est old lady in New York with an apart­ment lit­tered with fresh flow­ers. The two share a love of mar­ti­nis and chat like sis­ters. This could be a bi­ased and ex­ag­ger­ated opin­ion of Katin’s, but it is sweet nev­er­the­less.

While lean­ing to­wards the cornier side of things, Katin also shows the reader how the end­less squab­bling be­tween her and her hus­band of­ten lead to other mo­ments of love and sup­port.

On the whole, Let­ting It Go is a rather eye-open­ing read and some­what ed­u­ca­tional for those less clued in to the events it cov­ers – like my­self. It’s one of those books that piques your in­ter­est and makes you look up sto­ries, his­tor­i­cal facts and doc­u­men­taries you might not have been keen on be­fore.

Be­ware of the un­clothed mid­dleaged lady though. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

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