Mala Kacenberg

Mala's Cat
  • Mala's Cat

  • Alone in a forest with only a cat for company, this is the deeply moving true story of one little girl's remarkable survival in the shadow of the Holocaust.

    Growing up in the Polish village of Tarnogrod on the fringes of a deep pine forest, gives Mala the happiest childhood she could have hoped for. But, as the German invasion begins, her beloved village becomes a ghetto and her family and friends reduced to starvation. She takes matters into her own hands, and bravely removes her yellow star, risking sneaking out to the surrounding villages to barter for food.

    It is on her way back that she sees her loved ones rounded up for deportation, and receives a smuggled letter from her sister warning her to stay away. With only her cat, Malach, and the strength of the stories taught by her family, she walks away from everything she holds dear.

    Malach becomes her family, her only respite from painful loneliness, a guide and reminder to stay hopeful even when faced with unfathomable darkness. With her guardian angel by her side, Mala finds a way to navigate the dangerous forests, outwit German soldiers and hostile villagers, and survive, against all odds.

Mala Kacenberg (nee Szorer) was born in Tarnogrod, Poland in 1927. As World War II broke out, Mala found herself having to fend for herself at the tender age of 12, eventually escaping the ghetto and surviving in the forest, witnessing the horrors unfold in front of her. Surviving by her wits, courage and the help of a guardian angel (her cat Malach), she was the sole survivor of her family. Mala immigrated to London with other Jewish refugees after the war, where she raised a large beautiful family, living long enough to be blessed with many grandchildren. She enjoyed running a small Bed & Breakfast, treating all her guests as part of her family.

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