In 1941 the Ukraine had surrendered to Germany, and its citizens tried to prepare for their new lives under Nazi rule. Some of these citizens were members of Kiev's crack football team, the Dynamo. This very interesting book is the story of these men, who worked together in a bakery--the owner wasn't rescuing them, a la Oskar Schindler, so much as enjoying the prestige of having so many sports greats around him--and played a series of matches against various cobbled-together teams, including the German Luftwaffe. The author, better known for biographies of motion-picture giants such as Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro, tells this unusual World War II story the way it should be told: by setting it in its context. These games were played out against a backdrop of ruthless and capricious tyranny. The book reaches a shocking conclusion, as--perhaps not entirely surprisingly--the Germans decided the Kievans were enjoying altogether too much freedom as a result of these sportsmen and their games. A fascinating, exciting, and, ultimately, deeply unsettling book. David PittCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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"Dougan's narrative is both inspiring and humbling... this is a moving and memorable book."
"The author tells this unusual World War II story the way it should be told: by setting it in its context. A fascinating, exciting, and ultimately, deeply unsettling book."-- Booklist