A Blog About “Izzy’s Fire”

Izzy’s Fire is filled with the passion of one woman determined to do justice to the story of another woman who lived in hiding throughout the war years. The war has soul…Nancy Wright Beasley has told a powerful story with dignified restraint.  She has given voice to an underreported side of the Holocaust – life in hiding.” –Michael Berenbaum, Project Director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (1988-1993)

“Nancy is a passionate, dedicated writer who has written a searing story, sure to capture readers with Izzy’s Fire.  She proves herelf to be a storyteller who uses firsthand accounts and research with equal resolve.” – Adriana Trigiani, Author of the Big Stone Gap triology

“We’re talking the stuff of miracles here and Nancy Wright Beasley captures it well.” – Tom Graves, President, Baptist Theological Baptist Seminary of Richmond

Nancy Wright Beasley’s seven-year journey that led to this book began when she heard a Buchenwald survivor recite names of family members who died in the Holocaust.  Beginning to understand the significance of recording survivor history, she read memoirs, interviewed survivors and discovered the miraculous  journey that finally led Edna Ipson and her family from the heel of the Nazis to “the other side of hell.”  She tells of their journey in Izzy’s Fire.

42 Responses to A Blog About “Izzy’s Fire”

  1. Tgay Gordon says:

    Oh Nancy, I am proud of you all over again after reading these comments! I am going to get a copy of Izzie’s Fire ASAP. You are just beginning on this great journey with Izzie’s Fire. God Bless and congratulations! Blessings and Love, Tgay

  2. Frances Crutchfield says:

    Happy Friday the Thirteenth and Blog Launch.

  3. Wyman Brent says:

    As the founder of the Vilnius Jewish Library in Lithuania, I truly appreciate the incredible amount of research and detail which went into the writing of Izzy´s Fire. Nancy Wright Beasley brings a lot of heart and soul into the project. The story is one of hope and courage. It should be read by audiences across both the USA and Lithuania and in Israel. It is an important contribution to understanding human nature and the Holocaust.

  4. Gay Neale says:

    Izzy is really a good book, a solid read. It’s a story that needed to be told, and Nancy does it very well. I know it’s got a great future. g

  5. Peggy Weston says:

    Nancy, in writing Izzy’s Fire, you have shared an amazing, and difficult, yet powerful story. You poured your spirit into your words, and I have witnessed your deep compassion for this story. Beautifully written. I wish you continual wisdom and strength in your journey.

  6. Amber K. says:

    Dear Mrs.Beasley,
    I really enjoyed your book.It was a very imformative and heart touching story that was ten times better when you read it to us on CD. I felt it was a very important part of history that was well taught through a entertaining story of an ordinary family fighting for their lives. I am looking forward to reading another book by you soon!

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Dear Amber:

      I appreciate your feedback. Thanks for taking the time to write. Reader comments are very important to authors. I hope to have another book out before too long. NWB

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Thanks, Amber, for such a warm note. You were kind to take the time to contact me. It’s important for an author to get feedback. I hope you continue your studies on the subject.

  7. Kenneth G. says:

    Hi Mrs.Beasley. i loved Izzy’s fire, it was breathtaking and brought me to tear’s twice (of course i did not show it). I loved how descriptive it was and it made me feel like i was actually in the holocaust, i was afraid of whether the outcome would be like the story of Anne Frank, or if the Ipp family would actually survive through it. I cant wait for your next book to come out, which i hear might be about (excuse my spelling) leibale, thanks for spreading the word and may you be blessed for your work.

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Dear Kenneth:

      I’m so glad you were moved by the book. Thanks for your encouragement. It’s wonderful to have feedback – that’s what keeps me going. You’re right – I have written another book and hope to have it published before too long. I’ll keep you posted.
      Best wishes, NWB

  8. Casey B says:

    omi gawd mrs.beasley your book was awesome. i loved how it was all serious and about one of most heart breaking things in the world -THE HOLOCAUST.

  9. Josh L. says:

    The title of the book was very clever with how it was tied to the story, it is a very very very good book

  10. Billy K. says:

    Your book was very emotional. It has changed my view on the Holocaust forever. When you wrote it, did it change yours?

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Yes, my life will be forever different. I feel the book chose me, rather than the other way around. Being able to tell such a brave story, on so many levels, was a privilege. It shows that good people exist everywhere and writing about them gave me hope for the future. Thank you for your kind remarks.

  11. brenda m. says:

    hi mrs.beasley: i really liked your book and i thought it was awsome. i looking forward to reading more books of yours.

  12. Ujala K. says:

    Dear Mrs.Beasley,

    I really enjoyed the book. The most interesting part was when you talked about the potato hole. The book was emotional. I hardly knew anything about the Holocaust until I read your book. I am so happy that you wrote it, as it was a really good book. I think you should keep writing books.

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Thanks for your very kind comments. I’m glad the book helped you enlarge your knowledge of that time period. I would suggest you read others on the subject, as many good ones have been written. I have just finished writing another book, also set in Lithuania, but it hasn’t been published yet. Stay tuned.

  13. Brandon Grubbs says:

    I liked the book. It was well put together and I almost cried twice. Will you visit Elizibeth Davis Middle next year?

  14. Brandon Grubbs says:

    This book was a detailed realistic version of what actually happened during the Holocaust and it gives a great perspective of visualization techniques. It showed the big picture not just parts of it. I do hope you keep writing.

  15. Brooke Winne says:

    If you were in the position to help hide a Jew, would you take the risk? Why, or why not?

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      This is a good question, and it’s one I’ve pondered over the years. No one actually knows how they would react in a particular situation until after they are tested. I would like to believe that I would do the right thing and help save a fellow human being, whether it’s Jew, a person of another faith or an atheist. As human beings, we share a common bond. I believe that we are responsible for others, especially if they are in a bad situation and need help. What I have done is write “Izzy’s Fire” and tried to expose what happens when evil is allowed to run wild. My hope is that students will ponder questions such as yours before the time comes for action. Thank you for caring.

  16. Amanda Roth says:

    This book really inspired me. You should write another about the Holocaust. Also, the first time you met Eta, what was your reaction to her story?

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Thanks for the kind words. I was very touched by Mrs. Ipson’s story. Since I was a widow, we bonded immeidately. Over the years, our love and respect for each other deepened. She has been a special part of my life.

      • NWBWordsmith says:

        My reaction to her story was one of shock and admiration. I was shocked that anyone could be treated so terribly, and I admired how she was able to go on w/her life and be such a successful wife and mother. She is a very, very special person.

  17. Ilan Livshits says:

    Hi Mrs. Beasley. I want to mention that the discussion you and your readers have created on the blog is phenomenal and that it makes me happy to see that there are many others including myself that were moved and intrigued by this story. Personally it is very emotionally hard for me to read stories about the holocaust and is the reason I have avoided some of them, but I decided to read this book after my mother had recommended it. She was able to give me an overview of the story, since she is a co-worker of Sarah Pliamm, and eventually encouraged me to read your novel. I am glad that I had the courage to read another story about the holocaust because it has taught me to be grateful for everything I have and I hope it will have a similar effect on others who read about such historic events. Overall I am thankful to have read “Izzy’s Fire” and appreciate you and your affiliates’ efforts involved in creating this book. I look forward to reading more of your books. Thank you.

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Hello and thank you for your wonderful comment. I’m so glad you decided to read “Izzy,” as I wrote it especially for readers such as yourself. I, too, abhor the Holocaust and found it very, very distasteful to research. When I decided to write “Izzy,” my goal was to introduce the subject in a somewhat gentler format, telling the story but trying to soften the blow. I believe it is important to keep the history alive, so I deeply appreciate your efforts in overcoming your initial hesitation. Please thank your mother for suggesting you read it. Also, please pass along my good wishes to Dr. Pliamm. I spoke with her just a few weeks ago and told her that I had written a second book, a young adult historical novel based on Labaile Gillman, the young man who so unselfishly risked his life to save her. It is yet unpublished.

  18. Nomeda says:

    On June 15, 1940 at 3:00 P.M. the first Soviet occupation started that affected us all in Lithuania regardless of nationality. In Kaunas, my native hometown, every third inhabitant (kaunietis) was Jewish at that time. These few pages from Nancy’s book about the summer of 1940 have been a true discovery for me – to see the same tragedy through the Jewish eyes was just incredible. Thank you, Nancy, once again.

    http://repsyte.wordpress.com/2011/06/15/1940-m-birzelio-15-d-1500-negandos-spalva-raudona/

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      Thank you, my friend, for posting from Lithuania. It is very encouraging to hear from you,and it means more than you know to read your comments. I shared the article you wrote about “Izzy’s Fire” with my professor today. She, a native of Lithuania who moved to Kaunas as a child, was glad to see it. I hope to be able to read all of it by the time I finish my course in Lithuanian. Even now, after only four days, I can understand some of it. Thanks again. Labas vakaras.

  19. Don Dale says:

    Nancy, my friend and colleague, I apologize for my delay in reading “Izzy’s Fire.” I just finished it last evening. What a moving experience it was to learn the story of Eta, Izzy, and Jay, who endured so much danger, privation, and fear during the Holocaust, and how inspiring it was to read of their story in your excellent book, “Izzy’s Fire.”

    Perhaps the most moving paragraph in your book is a quote from Eta towards the end: “Some people say the Holocaust never happened. It happened. It happened. It has happened every day of my life since it happened. I have never been rid of it.”

    That one paragraph is a heartbreaking summary.

    Your task in writing the book was a monumental one, and it must have taken an enormous emotional toll on you, much as it did on the reader.

    It’s insufficient to simply say “thank you.” But I say it anyway, because I can find no better words.

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      It is always good to hear that “Izzy” has been a good read. It is especially rewarding to have a comment from someone who is not only a well educated individual but someone who is careful w/praise. I am honored by your kindness. It has inspired me to keep going on this very tough subject.

  20. insiteful post! I think that benefits me well. Answers a few concerns for me. Thanks!

  21. Maija says:

    I met Nancy through the Baltic Summer Studies Program that she amazingly took on. She gave me a copy of Izzy’s Fire and I read it one day. Partly because it was in English, which was a major relief after eight weeks of Latvian, but mainly because it is a wonderful story that Nancy tells beautifully. She is truly honest about the struggles that everyone was facing during that time. It was wonderful to meet her, and everyone should read this book!

  22. NWBWordsmith says:

    Maija is referring to a program where she studied Latvian and I studied Lithuanian at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, for the last eight weeks, from June – August. Estonian was also taught. While the courses were extremely tough, because they were so intense, it was a rare opportunity to study and learn of another part of the world. Meeting friends like Maija was another plus.

  23. Sonia Brokaw says:

    Richmond Pi Beta Phi Bibliophillies are very excited that you will be presenting and discussing Izzy’s Fire on September 21, 2011. You’ve been a joy with whom to talk, and I’m looking forward to meeting you.

    • NWBWordsmith says:

      I, too, look forward to the meeting. It is always rewarding for an author to speak with someone who has read their work. I seem never to have enough time to do all the reading I want to do, so I feel very honored that your group has chosen to read “Izzy.” It will be another valuable time for me, a time to gather input and understanding from those who are so important to me – book lovers.

  24. Pat Smith says:

    Nancy, your entry today is inspirational and perfect for the season, I think. Your own story is a remarkable one, too.

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