Between Black Death and Red Plague
Paperback, 109 Pages
Prints in 3-5 business days
This short book captures Maria Szubert’s reminiscences of the Second World War and life under communism in Poland. It offers a revealing snapshot of the terror and some of the hardships she endured during the war and the privations she suffered under communism, which held Poland in its grip until 1989. The book undoubtedly reflects the author’s deep humanity and her compassion towards the Nazi invaders when fortune turned them from masters into slaves. Equally poignant is her forbearance in the face of Poland’s subsequent subjugation by the communist Soviet Union.
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Jun 17, 2015We are rarely reminded of the appalling and desperate wars and occupation suffered by the Poles at the hands of the Nazis and later the communists. This book gives a vivid description of a family's determined survival remembered and recorded by the author and her elderly mother. Essential reading.
Jan 6, 2015This small book makes a big impact. The narrative 'voice' is authentic and utterly compelling, and the swift pace of the narration sweeps the reader through the terrible and tragic events of WW2 in Poland. What gives the book its distinctive character is that there are, in effect, two authors: Maria Szubert relates her story with all the energy and plausibility of a survivor who will never forget the suffering of those times but it is her daughter, Anna Nolan, who brings Maria's story to life through a translation which is marked by great clarity and economy of style as well as by emotional restraint. To say that the book is a pleasure to read is to risk devaluing its subject material. I would rather say that I read it at a single sitting in complete absorption, taking a minute's break here and there to try to understand the miracle of one family's survival of a nightmare which lasted years.
Nov 11, 2014This book describes the journey through life of Maria Szubert of Warsaw from the start of the WWII to her residency in the UK. The book is as good an adventure story as I have read. It is also a very good account of what can happen to innocent civilians caught between two warring nations. The language is so matter-of-fact and dispassionate that it brings the events to life in a way that is more realistic than fiction. With fictional stories one can always sense the author’s imagination at work whereas the adventures in this story were real life events. The descriptions of life under Communism are graphic. They give an insight into why the Capitalist system which is based on self interest and greed is more successful than Communism which is supposed to be based on altruism but where corruption became rife. Would that we could combine the best of both systems! The book is a riveting read and I recommend it to all interested in the social history of the 20th century.
Nov 11, 2014This book is a very thought provoking account which illustrates how challenging life was for ordinary people in occupied Poland during the Second World War and afterwards under communist rule. Maria's account of her struggle to survive as everyday life became increasing difficult is very inspiring. Once I started reading I could not stop until I finished. Maria shows that despite the horrors of war and its aftermath the human spirit is strong and will not be beaten. I thoroughly recommend it.
Oct 30, 2014A totally absorbing true story of the cruelty and evil of the Nazi and Russian communist regimes in our recent history. The courage shown by the writer and her contemporaries and the privations they had to suffer in surviving those times. Anna's translation of her mother's story demonstrates in a clear and succinct manner one ordinary family's survival under, hardly understood in the present western society, such comprehensively oppressive regimes. A wonderful book and a must read for anyone who does not appreciate the freedoms of democracy.
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- Glaramara Books (Standard Copyright License)
- Glaramara Books
- October 25, 2014
- Perfect-bound Paperback
- Interior Ink
- Black & white
- 0.47 lbs.
- Dimensions (inches)
- 6 wide x 9 tall
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