The CapRadio Reads Interview

In November, Capital Public Radio’s Donna Apidone interviewed me in front of a live audience about my great-grandfather’s art, the CHASING PORTRAITS book, and the forthcoming documentary film. The interview is now available online. Listen Here.

Chasing Portraits Radio Interview – Dallas, TX

Missed my interview on KERA’s Think? Not to worry, you can listen to it online or download it as a podcast.

KERA Think








About Think: “Since launching in November 2006, Think and host Krys Boyd have earned more than a dozen local, regional and national awards, including the 2012 Public Radio News Directors Inc. first place award for best call-in show, the 2016 Texas AP Broadcasters 2nd place award for local talk show, the 2013 Regional Edward R. Murrow award for breaking news coverage and more. In addition to airing on KERA FM, Think also is among the most-downloaded local podcasts in the public radio system, receiving about 200,000 downloads each month – more than half of which come from listeners outside the state. In each of the past two years, Think has been invited to broadcast live from the NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C.” []

Chasing Portraits Podcast Experience

I love podcasts. I gravitate towards non-fiction narratives, shows about books, and in-depth interviews. A great story draws me in, but well-honed delivery and strong editing keeps me listening. I have a not-so-secret confession. I’d love to produce a podcast. I sort of did in this Chasing Portraits Podcast Experience.


I’m often torn about reading from my book. Advice on this topic, as with almost every subject matter, varies widely. Some believe reading a short passage—just enough to interest potential readers—is a must. And then there are those who adamantly believe it’s a mistake to read from one’s own book because, well, no one wants to listen to an author whose delivery is long, flat, and uninspired.

I compromise. I read at my presentations, but only after introducing the Chasing Portraits story, and only for a very brief period. I’m the first to admit, it’s one thing to read at an event as part of a 45-minute presentation that includes images of my great-grandfather’s paintings as well as a chance to connect with the audience. It’s quite another to try to cram a very personal and [I hope] poignant experience into a 5ish-minute podcast. But not everyone can come to one of my events and, so I decided a podcast was worth a shot.

So here it is, the Chasing Portraits podcast experience.


[A special thank you to friend, supporter, and Sound Editor, Daryn Roven, for helping to make this recording possible]



Paris Writers News

Read the interview I did with Laurel Zuckerman on her Paris Writers News blog about Chasing Portraits in which I answer questions like: “Can you talk about the challenges of interviewing your own family – in particular your father – for information?” and “You’ve done an outstanding job articulating not just the beauty and power of your great-grandfather’s art, but also the emotional toll of searching for it. The grief, the obsessive desire to learn more, the doubt. Yet Chasing Portraits feels very even handed and fair. Was the original text like this or did you have to go through many drafts to attain this result?”


Schedule an Author Visit

The Reader, no date

Last night I attended a book group in Los Angeles via FaceTime to chat and answer questions about Chasing Portraits. And you know what?! It was so much darn fun for all of us. My contact from the group sent me this thank you email:

“Thank you, thank you, thank you!! Your participation in our book group discussion this evening was invaluable! Making Chasing Portraits available to us through your perseverance and tireless commitment to the work of tracking down your great-grandfather’s lost art is a generous gift in itself. The added gift of your time this evening was such a bonus and was very appreciated by all in attendance. This group has been meeting every month for almost ten years (I joined in 2009), and has never before been honored by the presence of an author. I can’t thank you enough!”

Is your book club reading Chasing Portraits? I’d love to join your discussion. I pop in after you’re settled in and have a glass of wine in hand. Then we chat for 30 to 40 minutes.
Email me to set it up: elizabeth [@] ChasingPortraits [dot] orgReader, 1930


kpixThis morning I filmed a show on the KPIX set for MOSAIC. MOSAIC interviews explore how Bay Area people’s lives are enriched by diversity of cultural and faith perspectives. The show, “Book Chat,” was hosted by Rabbi Eric Weiss. Guests included myself, Howard Freedman (Director, Jewish Community Library) and Michael David Lukas (Author, The Oracle of Stamboul). The episode will air Sunday October 9th at 5am. The show is divided into four segments. I am in the final two segments. The show is unlikely to be archived online, so if you want to watch it, and don’t plan to be up that early, you can certainly record it!

Book Q&As with Deborah Kalb

I did a Q&A with Deborah Kalb. My favorite question? How was the book’s title chosen, and what does it signify for you? Read the answer here.


Library Journal Review

Library Journal. September.

Rynecki, Elizabeth. Chasing Portraits:
A Great-Granddaughter’s Quest for Her Lost Art Legacy. NAL: Penguin. Sept. 2016. 400p. notes. bibliog. ISBN 9781101987667. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781101987681. MEMOIR
This debut by Rynecki is simultaneously a family history, an exploration of Jewish art destroyed by the Holocaust, and one woman’s struggle to understand and redefine her place among family and the world around her. In prose that reads like a novel, the author draws readers into her journey to locate and engage with as much of her great-grandfather’s art as possible. Although primarily focused on Rynecki’s great-grandfather, a Polish artist who disappeared during the Holocaust, the book is set against the larger backdrop of artists whose work and lives were stolen by the horrific events of World War II, and how their output must endure in order to have a chance at being restored and recognized. Rynecki also reveals how, through the tangible connection of art, the descendants of Holocaust victims and survivors discover their role in family stories and world history. VERDICT This personal and impassioned account will appeal to anyone interested in creativity, art history, the impact of World War II and the Holocaust on modern life, as well as readers curious about genealogy and the power of family stories.—Elizabeth Zeitz, Otterbein Univ. Lib., Westerville, OH


Book News!

Last night was the official book launch of Chasing Portraits at Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon. It was an in-conversation even with Judy Margles (Director of the Oregon Jewish Museum and the Center for Holocaust Education). The questions were great and the audience was delightful! My next event is Monday night at the JCCSF. powells

Today I woke up to some really lovely press about Chasing Portraits. Reading Group Choices placed it on their Featured Books list. Bustle posted “9 New Memoirs for your Next Book Club Pick,” and Chasing Portraits topped the list at #1! And last, but not least, New York’s, The Jewish Week, included Chasing Portraits in its list of non-fiction picks.




Chasing Portraits Book Jacket!


My book with jacket arrived this morning on my doorstep! I love the way it looks, particularly the art on the spine ❤️

In bookstores September 6th!