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History

Reading from "My Only Choice," Youth and Survival in a Totalitarian Regime, Hungary 1942-56

Helen Szablya reads selections from her book, My Only Choice, 1942-56 Hungary, on Wednesday, May 15, 4 p.m., Black Hall 152.  A book signing follows the reading.

In her book about youth and survival in a totalitarian regime, Helen Szablya describes her life as a young girl in Budapest during World War II when Hungary was first allied with and then occupied by Nazi Germany.  When the Soviets occupied the country after the war, she was just entering her teens.  By the time she and her husband, John, decided to flee the country, they had two toddlers and a ten-day-old baby.

My Only Choice focuses on the decisions that the members of the family faced during these years.  Throughout the story, up through the decision to emigrate after the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, Helen Szablya's story packs a tense, dramatic punch.

Once settled in the New World, John became a professor at WSU, Helen became a journalist, and they expanded the family to include four more children.