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Kapo Marek

Marek-Mordechai Greenstein was the kind of man who always knew how to get along. In Warsaw before World War II, he was known as “Mottel the Brute” on account of the services he provided to a wealthy Jew. He made a good living and was successful with women until history forced him into the ghetto and the camps. Arriving in Israel during the War of Independence, Marek becomes a fighter and a war hero. But then a man from his past recognizes him: he was a Kapo in Majdanek and Auschwitz, and badly abused the Jewish prisoners in his care. Arrested and sentenced to prison, he is later released into a life almost total seclusion. The book begins when Marek, now a pensioner, travels abroad for the first time, to Indonesia. This group vacation gives him a rare opportunity to experience human contact once again, and he has romantic experiences with Dora and with Nava, the pretty tour guide. But his horrific memories do not subside. On the contrary, the exotic scenery enhances their sharpness. And these flashbacks, intertwined with his holiday experiences, force Marek and the readers to confront questions of justice, morality, forgiveness and compassion.

Title Kapo Marek
Writer's Last Name Ilutowich
Writer's First Name Gil
Genre Fiction
Publisher (Hebrew) Am Oved
No. Pages 287pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Ochley Ha-Gehalim
  • “ Despite Kapo Marek`s past and his difficult personality, it is hard not to like him, and this is the author`s greatest achievement.”

  • “ The moral dilemmas and the inconceivable yet very realistic depictions remain with the reader long after he has finished the book.”

    Channel 7 TV
  • “ Shows us the moral split in a man`s heart which threatens to overpower him.”