Jean-Jacques Greif biography

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Jean-Jacques Greif

Jean-Jacques Greif

How to pronounce Jean-Jacques Greif: jon-jak greff (the j is pronounced in the French style, like the j in déjà vu. The author says that in France his name is usually pronounced greff, in Germany they tend to rhyme it with life, and in English with grief - anyway is fine with him!

Jean-Jacques Greif Biography

Jean-Jacques Greif was born in 1944 in Paris, France. From 1970 to 1975, he was an advertising copywriter. He has been a journalist at Marie Claire magazine since 1975. Greif originally published The Fighter in his native France, where it is entitled Le Ring de la Mort and where it was awarded a number of literary prizes. Although Jean-Jacques Greif is the author of dozens of books for young readers, The Fighter is his first book for teens to be published in the United States. He is married with three children and lives in Paris.

Jean-Jacques Greif's website

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Interview

Jean-Jacques Greif talks about The Fighter, his first book published in the USA, and how his father's experience in Auschwitz provided the inspiration, and many of the facts, behind this remarkable book.

Jean-Jacques Greif’s father, Lonek, was a prisoner in Auschwitz, a concentration camp in Poland, when Greif was born in the fall of 1944. Arrested just two weeks after his son was conceived, Lonek survived the horrors of the camp, and returned home six months after his son’s birth.

Since first hearing about Auschwitz as a young boy, Jean-Jacques Greif has been captivated by stories of the Holocaust and how survivors’ experiences shaped their lives and history and considers it to be a defining moment in his life. After writing several books in which the Holocaust played a minor role, he felt the need to write one in which it provides the main setting—and is itself a character. That book is The Fighter, based on the story of Maurice Gabarz, a friend of his father.

What follows is a conversation between Mr. Greif and his editor, Jill Davis, about the writing and the translation of The Fighter.



When you were a child, did your father talk about his experiences in Auschwitz?
It is said that Auschwitz survivors didn’t talk about the camp because other people couldn’t understand. If this is true, then they could talk to other survivors. When I was two or three, I hid ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Jean-Jacques Greif at BookBrowse
The Fighter jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Jean-Jacques Greif but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Denis Avey

    Denis Avey

    Denis Avey was born in Essex (UK) in 1919. He joined the army in 1939, and fought in the desert during the Second World War.

    Avery was captured and held as a prisoner of war for two years near Auschwitz III, a ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Fighter

    Try:
    The Man Who Broke Into Auschwitz
    by Denis Avey

  • Edward Bloor

    Edward Bloor

    Edward Bloor (born October 12, 1950) is an American author best known for his work in teenage and young adult fiction. Born into a diverse community in Trenton New Jersey, Bloor enjoyed an active lifestyle as a child, often ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Fighter

    Try:
    Taken
    by Edward Bloor

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