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Parting Words Reviews

Parting Words by Benjamin Ferencz

Parting Words: 9 lessons for a remarkable life

Benjamin Ferencz

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Sphere
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Publication date: 27 Oct 2020
ISBN: 9780751579918

100-year-old Benjamin Ferencz is the last surviving prosecutor of the Nuremberg Trials, where he prosecuted 22 leading Nazis. PARTING WORDS follows the story of Ben's life, and each chapter includes his learnings on how we can all make the most of ours - from the subjects of ambition and determination, to happiness and love.

4 stars out of 5
Nick Rennison
14 Jan 2021

"short but inspiring"

The hope of changing people's minds about war has kept him going for three-quarters of a century. Given what he witnessed at Buchenwald and other Nazi death camps, the most extraordinary thing about Benjamin Ferencz in his 101st year may well be his unwavering cheerfulness. His optimism about life and humanity shines through every page. 'If you're crying on the inside,' he says, 'you better be laughing on the outside . . . No use drowning in your own tears.' This seems as good a message as any to take away from this testimony to one exceptional individual.


3 stars out of 5
Daniel Finkelstein
26 Dec 2020

"the most important missed opportunity is that every sentence spent on advice is one not spent on the fabulous stories that made this a great read"

You would therefore expect his life story to be riveting, and it is. Nadia Khomami, the journalist who persuaded Ferencz to turn his tales into a book and then conducted and transcribed the interviews, has done a service to history and to readers who enjoy a good yarn. Ferencz never takes himself too seriously and Khomami has a lively style. Together they have made an engaging book. Indeed, my most serious criticism of Parting Words is one I hardly ever make about any reading material. It is too short. There wasn’t one anecdote or episode that didn’t make you wish to hear more about it, to understand it better, to learn what happened next.