About the Book

Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant’s Search for Identity is Sylvie Heyman’s personal narrative as a refugee, with her family, from Europe during World War II. It chronicles their journey to Brazil, the harrowing experiences as they were smuggled to Argentina, the challenges faced in those dictatorship countries, and the final immigration to the United States of America when the author was a teenager.
In the second part of the book, the author blends her personal experiences with scholarly theories about language, nationality, and identity to better understand the long-term struggles and challenges that immigrants face.

About the Author

Sylvie Heyman published her first book: Make it a HABIT! Creating Health and Happiness for your Body, Mind, and Spirit at the age of 79 in March 2017. The book was an extension of the author’s experiences in the healthcare field and covers a span of 50 years as a Registered Nurse, Chiropractor, Acupuncturist, and Health Coach. At the beginning of the “habit” book, the author describes her origins and her reasons for pursuing careers in the healing arts. This led to writing her memoirs about her family’s escape during World War II and how her past molded her life.

   Beyond the Holocaust An Immigrant Search for IdentityBeyond the Holocaust An Immigrant Search for Identity


National Master Evan Rabin, CEO of Premier Chess

In Episode 116, I have the pleasure of conversing with Sylvie Heyman, the author of “Make it a HABIT” and “Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant’s Search for Identity”. She is a survivor of World War II . She started her career as a registered nurse specializing in obstetrics and later on, heading the cardiac operating room at St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, NY, as an educator and administrator. Since then she was an acupuncturist and chiropractor and currently is a Certified Health Coach, focusing on five habits Habits of Health: healthy weight, healthy diet, healthy physical activities, healthy sleep, and healthy mindset.

We speak about her 2 books, a preview of her upcoming 3rd book, the differences of surviving the Holocaust and World War II, her experiences in the health world, accountability, benefits of chess, and more.

Imagine having to uproot your life and move to an entirely different place where you aren’t familiar with the language, people, or culture. Now, imagine going through this experience while also dealing with the challenges of being a teenager. This was the reality for Dr. Sylvie Heyman, the author of Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant’s Search for Identity.

Allan Rolnick of The Tax Resolution Ninja Show interview Dr. Sylvie Heyman about her book, Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant’s Search for Identity. Tune in as Dr. Heyman talks about her family’s journey to the U.S. when she was just 14 years old, the struggles they faced in adapting to life in a new country, the importance of understanding the immigrant experience, and why she felt encouraged to tell her story.

Host Cyrus Webb welcomes author Sylvie Heyman to #ConversationsLIVE to discuss her book Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant’s Search for Identity.


Beyond the Holocaust, well worth reading  

"I just finished reading your book and am very impressed on a number of levels but mainly about your incredible life and travels from Brussels through Europe to Brazil and then Argentina escaping Nazis and then finally to the USA. I was impressed too with your incorporation of life lessons from Erik Erikson, Abraham Maslow and Toni Morrison on your journey from Who am I to Who I am."

Carol OBrien    Amazon   
Book2 Reviews  

"I congratulate you for your courage to reveal so much of your private feelings in public. I am glad you did. My grandmother came to this country when she was 19 years old. We were very close. My in-laws were also immigrant teenagers. Your book gave me some insight and empathy about what they experienced. I was especially interested in your comments re the mysterious dynamics of language. Thoughts about the psychological nuances of language have been a fascination to me. Good luck to you. "

Betty Schweitzer    Bellevue Nursing School classmate   
Heartfelt + Thoughtful Read  

"Sylvie does a great job of describing not only the process of escaping the Nazis, but also how it emotionally impacted her life. It's important for us to remember that there is a difference between a survivor and a refugee, and Sylvie talks about the distinction + her guilt from being a refugee. Would recommend it!"

Harris    Amazon   
Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite  

"Sylvie Heyman’s remarkable memoir, Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant's Search for Identity, details her family’s journey of leaving Belgium with the hope of living in the US during the Second World War. Born in 1938, Heyman was only a toddler when her immediate and extended families decided to flee from Belgium. In May 1940, Heyman and her family were awakened by frightening tremors, the Nazis had invaded Belgium. The six families left the country for France, which had not yet been invaded. In June 1940, Paris was invaded by the Nazis which led the family to change their plans and head for Arcachon, located in the southwest of France. Along the way, the families were separated. Heyman and her parents’ journey would include years of uncertainty living in South America as they hoped to flee the Holocaust and anti-Semitic aggression."

"Beyond the Holocaust: An Immigrant's Search for Identity is a crucial work that reflects upon the challenges that immigrants face in settling into a new culture while trying to overcome accumulated trauma. I found the memoir especially relevant to today’s world as the number of immigrants across the world continues to grow. Through Heyman’s and her parents’ personal experiences, the memoir shows how different people of different ages, personalities, and backgrounds assimilate differently. The search for identity becomes paramount when one is forced to shed their former identity so as to fit in. As anti-Semitic attacks continue to occur in today’s world, works such as Beyond the Holocaust by Sylvie Heyman play an important role in revealing the horrific and extensive impacts of similar atrocities."

Edith Wairimu    Readers' Favorite   
Book2 Reviews  

"Heyman's book is a powerful narrative of the refugee and Holocaust experiences. It is a compelling and insightful reflection of her family's journey. "

Rabbi Lee T. Bycel    Served on the Board of the U.S. Holocaust Museum and Committee on Conscience 2014-2019.