Sneider, Marian 1932-2005

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Sneider, Marian 1932-2005


Born 1932; died in FL, 2005.




(With Ruth Vander Zee) Eli Remembers, illustrated by Bill Farnsworth, Eerdmans Books for Young Readers (Grand Rapids, MI), 2007.

Contributor to periodicals, including Highlights for Children and Turtle.


The late Marian Sneider was a family therapist and an author who wrote for Highlights for Children, Turtle, and two Miami area newspapers. At a writers' meeting, she presented a personal story, based on the experiences of her young grandson, Ely Sandler. Ely had just come back from a trip to Lithuania with his grandfather. He learned that between July, 1941 and August, 1944, between 70,000 and 80,000 Jews, including seven members of Sneider's family, as well as 20,000 Poles and 8,000 Russians, were killed and buried in mass graves near Ponary, Lithuania, in the Ponar Forest. Ruth Vander Zee heard this story, and having published a previous book about the Holocaust, she arranged with Sneider to coauthor Eli Remembers.

According to a contributor to Publishers Weekly, in Eli Remembers Sneider and Vander Zee "use simple, direct language to follow Eli's trajectory from puzzlement and ignorance to horrific realization and resolve." Hazel Rochman, writing in Booklist, respected the book as an experience in sharing family history in many Jewish survivor families, but added that, "unfortunately, the present-day scenario is sentimentalized; the characters are almost greeting-card icons of grief and love." In an interview with Sue Corbett for the Miami Herald, Vander Zee discussed how the book was written. "Having a Jew [Sneider] and a Christian write a book together is a unique experience because we look at life so differently," she explained. Vander Zee saw a story of forgiveness, while Sneider saw a story of remembrance. Sneider died in 2005, six months after Eli Remembers found a publisher.

Biographical and Critical Sources


Booklist, July 1, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of Eli Remembers, p. 59.

Miami Herald, November 17, 2007, "Boy's Past Revives War Story."

Publishers Weekly, September 24, 2007, review of Eli Remembers, p. 71.

Social Education, May-June, 2008, review of Eli Remembers, p. S14.