Fred Bergmann is a promising young surgeon. His wife Ruth has great intuition and plenty of ‘chutzpah’! They have their whole lives in front of them and a young family to love and cherish. Yet history has other plans. The year is 1933. The setting – Leipzig, Germany. Hitler has just come to power and National Socialist fervour is rife.
Fred, the optimist, believes the danger will moderate. But Ruth sees the writing on the wall. As the German nation hurtles towards war and the systematic persecution of Jews becomes endemic, she knows they must act.
Told by Ruth and Fred’s daughter, They Called Her Cassandra is a powerful and compelling family history, which provides an intimate insight into one of the pivotal moments in world history. As well as showing the plight of one family, this remarkable account also sheds light on post-war Britain from a refugee perspective. Above all, this is a book about love and endurance.
Renée Tyack was born in Leipzig, Germany in 1934 and now lives in Hove, East Sussex. She trained at RADA and worked in theatre and television including with the Nottingham Repertory Company and for the BBC, Thames and Granada in the 1950s and 60s. She retrained as a lecturer in further education, teaching English and Drama to refugees and immigrants throughout the 1980s and 90s. She also established and taught on courses for people with disabilities and later taught on Teacher Training and Access courses until she retired in 2003. Renée is a proud mum to five children and grandma to ten grandchildren.