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M.M. Diaries

ISBN: 9798985796230
Binding: Hardcover
Author: Terence Clarke & Ron Kaufman
Pages: 272
Trim: 6 x 9 inches
Published: 01/01/2024

Through the actions of its main character, Moses Mendelssohn, this fine novel accurately chronicles the rise of Nazi Germany, many World War ll battles, and the Holocaust. A gifted scientist and engineer, Moses is the developer of Nazi Germany's V-2 rocket guidance system. He is also a member of the legendary Mendelssohn family that includes his namesake, the noted 18th century philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, the 19th century genius composer Felix Mendelssohn, and the legendary Mendelssohn family of German bankers.

Although his family converted to Lutheranism in 1816, the Mendelssohns are considered simply as Jews by the Nazi regime, and therefore targeted. But without Moses's expertise, the missile will fail as Germany's ultimate weapon. Moses's wife and child, both also considered Jews, disappear from Berlin, and Moses learns that they have been kidnapped by the Nazis. He knows that if the V-2 fails, his family will perish, as will he.

The V-2 must fly so that his family may be saved.


Terence Clarke is a novelist (Mercury House, Ballantine Books, and others), a short-story writer (The Yale Review, The Antioch Review, Catamaran, The Chariton Review, Tampa Review, Kindle Singles, and many others), a journalist (Substack, San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, Huffington Post), a developmental editor of fiction and non-fiction books, and a translator of literature from Spanish to English. He is also co-founder and former editorial director at Astor & Lenox (astorandlenox). His books are available everywhere, in print and digital editions.

Terence Clarke's books:

Novels:  My Father in the Night, The King of Rumah Nadai, A Kiss for Señor Guevara, The Notorious Dream of Jesús Lázaro, The Splendid City (English language), La espléndida ciudad (Spanish language), When Clara Was Twelve, The Moment Before

Short story collections: The Day Nothing Happened, Little Bridget and the Flames of Hell, New York

Non-fiction: Fathers, Sons, and Seizures, The Sea Lion and The Sculptor, An Arena of Truth: Conflict in Black and White

Ron Kaufman studied European diplomatic history at the University of California, Berkeley in the early 1950s. It was taught by a former officer of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) who had been active in World War II. Ron went on to receive an MBA in Real Estate Research and Urban Land Economics. Eventually he was instrumental to the restoration of the signature northeast waterfront neighborhood in San Francisco, an effort heralded in several architectural and real estate journals and magazines. That project is the subject of Ron's non-fiction book The Old North Waterfront.

Ron's mother's family was from Lida, Lithuania and emigrated to the U.S. in the early 1900s. His father's family was from Russia and Germany. Ron has devoted all his adult life to serving the Jewish and general communities. He is married to Barbara Kaufman (former President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors), has three children (Steve, Karen, and Nirmada) and four grandchildren (Olivia, Anna, Zev, and Ari.) Ron has lived and worked in San Francisco since 1959.

Ron Kaufman's books:

Fiction: Entries in M.M. Diaries

Non-fiction: The Old North Waterfront

"The moral conflicts here—a Jewish scientist working on the Nazis' V2 rocket, forced to do so in order to save his family—are deep and terrifying. Beautifully written. A must-read." - Beatrice Bowles, author of the novel A Ring of Riddles, six recorded collections of children's stories, Voting Member of The Grammys

"An amazing retelling of the (Second World War) through the eyes of the main character, physicist and rocket scientist Moses Mendelssohn. The research is extraordinary." - Frances Dinkelspiel, author of Tangled Vines: Greed, Murder, Obsession, and an Arsonist in the Vineyards of California

"I was drawn in to the drama and extremity of this very scary and formative time in world history, with so many lessons applicable and understandable today." - Tricia Gibbs, San Francisco Free Clinic and The Hellman Foundation

"Right away I was hooked." - Abby Porth, Former Chief Executive Officer, Jewish Community Relations Council

"A gift to history." - Rabbi Howard J. Ruben, Head of School, Jewish Community High School of The Bay, San Francisco

"The best review of that history I have ever read." - reader George

"In light of the tragedies in Israel and Gaza, this work is especially significant." - readers Robin and Robert