WEST Kilbride author and former teacher Saskia Tepe is set to retell the dramatic and terrifying story of how her mother survived the Holocaust.

The talk – being held at Irvine Library on Monday, January 30 – will recall the incredible story of her mother who survived the Holocaust, as well as Saskia’s own experiences as a child in post-war Germany

Saskia was just 13-years-old when her mother, Brigitte, told her she jumped off a train bound for Auschwitz. It was a secret she had kept hidden until 1967.

Brigitte had been designated a mixed-race Jew by the Nazis and, after working as a slave labourer some 50 miles west of the notorious death-camp until the winter of 1944, she was thrown on to a train headed to certain death.

The only thing that saved her was knowledge of the area, deep snowdrifts, and the courage to take a leap of faith. Although she had escaped the ultimate fate experienced by some six million Jews, this did not mean that life became easier for her.

Saskia’s book “Surviving Brigitte’s Secrets” describes how both were finally able to emigrate from West Germany to the UK with the help of the UN’s 1959 World Refugee Year initiative.

It is both a coming-of-age story, and a tribute to Saskia’s remarkable mother, who died in 1992 and is buried in West Kilbride.

Doors will open for the talk at Irvine Library Doors at 6.30pm on Monday, January 30, with Saskia’s talk starting at 7pm.