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The author recounts the seven-decade Saga of her 1956 Hungarian Refugee family, as a memoir presented in “Story Form,” with historical perspective.
Jozsef F. Bognar, a renowned musician and Freedom Fighter, with a death sentence inflicted upon him by the Soviet Army, makes a death-defying escape with his wife and baby daughter (the author of this book), seeking a small bridge, shrouded amidst swampy marshland, whose rickety planks wait to lead the family into a vast void called “Freedom.”
With heartrending detail, the author recounts the atrocities suffered by her “child-parents” in World War II Hungary, and the brutality inflicted upon the Hungarian people as the 1956 Revolution shattered their world.
In America, the family faces countless formidable enemies – Ethnic persecution, destitution, communal conflict, and family dissent.
Pure Love is the only power strong enough to carry them through the turbulent tides ebbing away at the foundation of their lives. But is the family’s love powerful enough, strong enough, to sustain them through the bittersweet journey ahead? Only the torrents of time would tell …
In the shadow of today’s turbulent world events of cultural inequity, national rebellion, family discourse, and the omnipresent, magnificent power of Love Everlasting, this True Telling is mesmerizing and inspirational.
Fleeing vile, Soviet oppression, in pursuit to find a life of freedom for his family, Jozsef Frank Bognar, a renowned musician and Hungarian Freedom Fighter, an unsung hero of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, with a death sentence pronounced upon him by the Soviet army, makes a daring, last-minute, nighttime escape from his beloved country with his wife and young, two-year-old daughter (author Judith Bognar Bean), amidst a barrage of reverberating machine-gun fire, seeking a way to Andau, Austria, from where the family is taken to board a United States Army ship sent to carry Hungarian Refugees to America. Jozsef was no ordinary man, but rather extraordinary in every way. His very character defied the definition of bravery, righteousness and selfless love. Through his bravery and determination he saved his family and future descendants from tyranny, bondage, and death.
Now, many years later, author, Judith Bognar Bean, recounts the seven-decade life and times of her dear father, Jozsef, and her family’s history and trek to America. She talks about her family’s life after arriving in America and the struggles therein. There were many distressing battles to fight in the early years in America: ethnic discrimination, extreme poverty, family disagreements, and more.
Bittersweet Freedom is a glorious family saga filled with drama and intrigue. I couldn’t put this marvelous memoir, written in story form, down. Author Judith Bognar Bean has composed a shocking account of her family’s harrowing escape from Hungary during the dark, mournful days of the Hungarian Revolution.
After her father dies, Judith’s mother is left mentally undone, and emotionally unstable due to the grueling experiences of her childhood during World War II in Hungary. Judith attempts to take care of her mother and tries to help her recover and life goes on. This is a must-read, true story of one family’s trials, tribulations and triumphs over seventy years’ time. It is about hardship, bravery, the mortality of man, enduring selfless love and determination.
Jozsef Frank Bognar was brave beyond words, self-sacrificing, giving and showed his family unconditional eternal love. The story of this extraordinary man captivated me from beginning to end.
I couldn’t put Bittersweet Freedom down and it kept me up into the late hours of the night. It’s a true story about immigration, survival, strong family ties, love and sentiment. It is startling, funny and sad. My emotions were caught up in this story as I really came to love this family and reveled in all they had endured and triumphed in.
Bittersweet Freedom is a magnificent story that is both a memoir and biography embedded with accurate historical accounts, entwined about the many atrocities suffered by her parents (as children) during World War II in Hungary, as well as the unimaginable horrors inflicted upon the Hungarian people during the 1956 Revolution. Judith Bognar Bean gives us an accurate, descriptive account of that tragic time in history, as well as a deep look into the family’s hopes, joys, suffering and anguish over the next several decades of their lives. Bittersweet Freedom is a gripping drama, profoundly inspirational, and should not be missed. This saga is well-written and composed by a talented and passionate writer, Judith Bognar Bean. I highly recommend it to all readers and those looking for an extraordinary story to marvel in.
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