In The In Between, I take you on a journey through some of World War II’s most grim and blood-soaked sites while sifting through my own personal losses. Led by my relentless pursuit of truth and burning curiosity, I invite you to travel alongside me to witness these lasting remnants of humanity’s collective cruelty.
I have a unique way of staring history in the face with a combination of deep empathy, stark truth, and artistic sensibility. This evocative compilation provides you with an intimate glimpse into human behavior as I witness history and offer remembrance while excavating my own personal demons.
The In Between was created on one journey over nineteen days as I explored sites in Germany, Austria, Poland, Latvia, and the Czech Republic. Its stories are made even more powerful with a unique combination of photographs, art, and journal writing in the style of my wildly popular first book, The Underneath: A Visual Memoir.
The In Between documents my 19 day journey through 5 countries.
My itinerary was packed with some of World War Two's most notorious locations, such as: the former Gestapo headquarters in Berlin; Ravensbrück, Sachsenhausen, Mauthausen, Gunskirchen, Terezín, Kaiserwald, and Salaspils concentration camps; Treblinka Extermination Camp; Warsaw; a Latvian battlefield; Rumbula massacre site, and Lidice massacre site. I met with survivors of the war's atrocities, and spoke with descendants of veterans, liberators, and perpetrators from both sides.
All will all show up in this 408 full color page compilation of artwork, journal writings, photographs, and facts about the places I ventured into, the people I met along the way, and the soulful excavation that always takes place. I brought with me my camera, my passion for history, and four years of extensive research into the humans of WW2 who fell on all sides of this epic world wide war.
This book provides an intimate glimpse into tragic history, and will provide you with the feeling that you were there, too.
what people are saying ...
This is a powerful book. Don't read it if you prefer your life as it is, in your "safe" space, never wanting to question anything, never wanting to change. Don't read it if you prefer to just accept what has been and what is.
This book will change you and how you see the past, present and future. It could even change how you create your life, relationships, and work on a deep level. It will cause you to stop judging the hell out of everything, and create a desire to bear witness to the past and present and DO something with your new awareness.
- Jennifer Holik, Global Coordinator of the World War II Research and Writing Center
This book is mesmerizing, from her impeccable writing to her guttural art. I just finished reading Erin's magical book, The In Between. In its pages she paints an ethereal world where past and present collide in a visceral way, and in a way that takes her reader on a journey far below into the depths of feeling - and above to the heights of thinking. It is aptly named because Erin takes you somewhere between what you think you know about WW2 and human consciousness, and what you don’t. - Ashley Fincham
I just finished reading The In Between and it took my breath away, tore my soul to shreds and shattered my heart. Then painstakingly put it all back together through her words, photos and art. I am a different person than I was for the reading of it. In some ways, parts of my heart that I didn’t know where injured have begun the process of healing. YES. It is that POWERFUL!
The In Between provided a visual expression of a very real and painful period of our history; a visual landscape upon which Erin deftly weaves together her own personal heartbreak at that time, along side a very revealing journey through the places and people directly affected by the Nazi war crimes. The artwork alone spoke volumes and twisted my heart up in ways that left me feeling as if I had been there. I’d read a few pages, stop and give myself time to absorb what I was seeing on the pages. For a book to have that kind of impact is evidence that Erin poured herself into the project that resulted in this book. It’s heart wrenching, revealing and provides a very personal view of a horrific time period.
The In Between offers a very real, intensely emotional experience. It’s beyond words and images on paper. It’s a bullet in the heart. It’s bones unearthed at your feet. The only question you can possibly have is ‘why and how did this happen?' and then the realization comes hard and fast like a punch to the solar plexus that we cannot let this happen again. Ever. The In Between is not a book one simply reads. It’s deeply felt and leaves you raw, exposed and yet somehow hopeful at the same time. - Susie LaFond
The In Between is a hefty book - substantial, weighty, strong, powerful. Erin Faith Allen combines raw, evoking art and imaginative, reflective photography with a deeply personal narrative that weaves the reader through the unimaginable horrors of World War II. She picks through the painful remnants scattered across Europe while bravely laying bare her own heartbreak. Constantly questioning why? and how?, Erin forced me as the reader to journey with her and ask what would I have done?
So thought provoking was her book that I have found myself returning to the truths from its pages, especially this: "We often 'connect' at extremes: All love or all hate. All black or all white. All right or all wrong. All true or all false. But I'm here to tell you that it's the places in between those opposites where true connection and its rich myriad of possibilities lives, breeds, and multiplies. Everything else leads to polarization." The In Between is truly a work of art that is both deeply moving and motivating- Mary-Anne Wagner
I was introduced to Erin by a fellow historian, we immediately struck it off with our passion for WW2 history. I had a look at the artwork Erin produces to express the events of history and her thoughts and feelings of locations she has visited. Erin very kindly sent me copy of her new book The In Between. Her journey would take her to some of the most darkest and inhumane locations run by the Nazi Regime.
Written in the style of a travel journal, you get to really feel what Erin is thinking at each location and then the contemplation of the day’s events. This is not only documented in written words but in detailed artwork. Each piece of artwork makes you stop and think of the locations and then try and read into what you are visually seeing.
Erin has put a meaning into each of her artwork pieces but it also gives the reader a chance to reflect for themselves. I found myself studying the artwork and thinking of my own thoughts in what I am seeing. The photographs accompanying the journey are also moving and helps build up a picture mentally of what took place at some of these notorious horrific locations.
Within you will also find some excellent accounts from families on their history and the effects it still has on them. today.
I would highly recommend this book to anybody with an interest in WW2 hHistory and artwork. The presentation and feel of the book is great. A unique journal from Erin, looking at a dark side of human nature and stories that should never be forgotten. - Ben Mayne, battlefield guide and historian
'Deeply moved' doesn’t even begin to capture my experience. I felt like I was transformed with the turning of each page. I was touched by the writing, the photos, and the paintings.
I recommend this book even if you thought this wasn't a subject that called out to you. In its pages is a human condition that must be talked about. Erin explored both sides of the issues which expands the readers to move beyond judgments and into understanding. It is through understanding that there is hope for our current times. - Jeanie Bernard
Erin's first book The Underneath opened my eyes to a new way of sharing a story. It was so raw and honest and gave me courage to open myself to sharing a little of my own story. It was also my first exposure to a pictorial memoir.
The In Between' is a valuable look at the legacy of war through the thoughts of someone who asks questions and wants to understand - rather than point the finger of blame, which is so crucial at this time in our history. It is very important work Erin is doing as she bears witness to the past and uncovers how it affects our present tense and our future. We cannot change what we do not know. I am forever grateful for my introduction to Erin's work. - Deborah Rhee
The In Between, like Erin’s first book, is brutally honest and raw. Showing all the parts of herself, especially the hard parts. Feeling lost, looking for answers, blocking out her thoughts through her exploration and drowning in them at the same time. Her connections to history, it’s relics, and her deeply personal stories all collide as she tries to make sense of unimaginable cruelty - and acts of loyalty and compassion - at great personal risk, both in history’s pages and in her now.
Her writing feels unedited, sharing everything, not just curated parts to suit an acceptable narrative. Her photography is haunting and her artwork reflects the colours of the grim landscapes, her art focusing on the humanity (or lack of) in war. She does not choose sides, instead looking at all sides in her search for understanding.
It is rare to find a book with writing like this - it has joined her first book in a coveted position on my bookcase. - Coral Lee
I want to thank Erin for including me in her new book. It was an honor to have my name and a Soldbuch story featured. Erin’s book The in Between is a journey through five countries scarred forever by the Second World War.
Her journal style writing combined with her art and photos serves as a deeper look inside our collective history, albeit cruel and tragic.
A real journey of emotions, history, and the sad reality of what humans can do to each other, it’s a must have on your shelf! - Jonathan Bay, historian and researcher