3 Book Bundle – The Guardian’s Son, A Brother for Sorrows & Sentence of Death Denied

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Get All 3 of Anita Tiemeyer’s Novels

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Get All 3 of Anita Tiemeyer’s Novels

The Guardian’s Son

An American army doctor, Major Grayson Pierce, finds a little boy hiding in a stench-filled barrack at the Buchenwald concentration camp in April 1945. A devout Catholic, Pierce realizes that God is allowing him to save one precious life among the ubiquitous piles of naked corpses in this notorious Nazi slave labor camp. After the war, the doctor, a widower, brings Joe to his home in Ithaca, New York, and becomes his guardian. At the Pierce mansion, Joe struggles with his nightmares of Buchenwald and with three old women who see him as an intrusion–Grayson’s “fire-breathing” mother, Nina Cassandra, his “drill sergeant” older sister, Mildred, and a benign but indifferent Aunt Elvie. Making things worse is Grayson’s eight-year-old insolent daughter, Irene, who refuses to accept Joe as her new “brother.”

Grayson nearly comes to blows with his mother and sister when he chooses to rear his ward as a Jew while they insist that the boy must be converted to Catholicism. To escape the family “pressure cooker,” Grayson and Joe take a two-week excursion around New York State. Joe learns English and bonds with his guardian in trust and love. Back at the mansion, he is better prepared to deal with the old women, but the bitter fight over his soul continues for the next several months, coming to an acrimonious conclusion at Christmastime.

The Guardian’s Son is a story of how the devastating memories of Buchenwald affect a young boy and his guardian, and how religious intolerance, hypocrisy, and racism poison a deeply religious family. In the end, hatred, bigotry, and anti-Semitism are overcome in Christian values of benevolence, kindness, charity, and compassion in this powerful story.

A Brother for Sorrows

In the fall of 1962, Joe Kaufmann is a Jewish doctoral student in history at Indiana University. He is unwittingly dragged into a waking nightmare when he befriends freshman music major Robert Stangarden. At the end of the school year, Joe helps Robert move back to his home in Indianapolis. However, he comes face-to-face with Robert’s parents, Henry and Ada Stangarden, whom he recognizes as Nazi civilians who had worked at the Buchenwald concentration camp where he and his parents had been prisoners in 1944. In mind-numbing shock, Joe descends into a deep depression as he relives those awful childhood memories of seeing unimaginable cruelty and barbarity and losing his parents. He attempts suicide but survives. He then retreats to his home in Ithaca, New York, to put 700 miles between himself and this wicked Nazi civilian and his kind but defeated wife.

However, this is not the end of Joe’s contact with the Stangardens. When the fall semester at I. U. approaches, Robert is eager to go back. But Henry must keep Robert away from Joe. He cannot risk exposing his sinister past if the two young men meet again and Robert learns who his parents really are. During their argument, Henry viciously beats Robert, almost killing him. Robert’s mother, Ada, helplessly witnesses the assault. After her husband storms out of the house, she takes Robert by taxi to the hospital and abandons him. Later, despite Robert’s subsequent insistence to the police that he and his father just had a “discussion,” Henry is arrested for the near murder of his own son. While the lawyers prepare for trial, tensions build as both Joe and the Stangardens desperately try to hide their toxic past relationship. Joe is the lynchpin to this whole nasty affair, and he wants no involvement. He fears this Nazi thug will come after him sooner or later. At the end of the trial, To Henry’s utter surprise, he is convicted of attempted voluntary manslaughter.

Joe is relieved, believing he can move on with his life. But long-buried secrets from Buchenwald remain. Henry’s wife, Ada, knows what happened at there with Joe’s parents. Unable to hold her silence any longer, she chooses to give up her only child to reveal the true connection between Joe Kaufmann and Robert.

One family is shattered; a new, promising one is created out of the embers of a Nazi concentration camp.

Sentence of Death Denied

In 1950, ninth-grader Joe Kaufmann stumbles into a torrid, one-sided affair with band classmate Alyssa Broderick at Boynton Junior High School in Ithaca, New York. This seemingly sweet, fresh-faced hussy seduces Joe. He naively falls in love with her and is blind to her cruel manipulation.

Joe’s turbulent school year continues when in November, three students attack him when he refuses to cheat for them on a geometry test. Although he recovers physically from this brutal assault, his emotional state remains in tatters. Only after Christmas does he seem to get back on track. However, in April, he mysteriously disappears, and his family is panic-stricken to find him. When he is found eight days later, he is committed to a psychiatric hospital to treat his inexplicable amnesia.

The psychiatrist, Dr. Montgomery, delves into Joe’s memories of his childhood experiences at a Nazi concentration camp. Joe slides into depression and anorexia. He wants to commit suicide by starvation. With his guardian, Grayson Pierce, at his side, Joe is admitted to the Albany hospital, where the only goal is keeping him alive. Dr. Montgomery joins Grayson in trying to save Joe from himself. Assuming his memories had triggered his amnesia and flight from reality, Grayson and the psychiatrist hold onto Joe to keep him from joining the pitiful Holocaust victims who had died so many years ago.

When Joe mentions that he had been struck by an unknown student in the school cafeteria, giving him a concussion, the real cause for his flight from home and his amnesia are unveiled. And he learns bitterly that his toxic relationship with Alyssa Broderick had started all of this. Her bigoted, anti-Semitic views are uncloaked. Will he be able to step over this ugly episode and move on?


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