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War of the Rats Mass Market Paperback – June 6, 2000
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
More About the Author
In 1976, David graduated with a B.A. in Theater and Speech from the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. Having little actual theatrical talent, he didn't know what to do for a living. David decided to attend what he calls the "great catch-basin of unfocused over-achievers": law school. He received his Juris Doctorate at William and Mary in 1980, then practiced environmental law in Columbia, S.C. for precisely a year (his father demanded back the money for law school if David practiced for less than one year - he quit two weeks before the anniversary but got Sam to agree that the two weeks' vacation David had accumulated could be included). David decided to attend Psychology school, having an affinity for people's stories and a fascination with woe. However, while waiting for admisison in 1981, he began a successful freelance writing career. He began writing fiction in 1997, and has since published twelve novels. He's currently working on the thirteenth, the fourth in his U.S. Air Force Pararescuemen series, as well as several scripts for the stage and screen. He has won awards for his essays and screenplays, and has had three stage plays produced.
David is an accomplished guitarist, studying the works of James Taylor and Latin classical. At six feet six inches tall, he stays active with his sailboat, shooting sporting clays, weightlifting, traveling to research his novels. He is the founder of the James River Writers (Jamesriverwriters.org) a non-profit group in his hometown of Richmond that helps aspiring writers and students work and learn together as a writing community. He also co-founded The Podium Foundation (thepodiumfoundation.org), a non-profit which brings writing and critical reasoning programs to the students of Richmond's city high schools, as well as support programs for city educators. Most recently, David is the creator of The Mighty Pen Project, an intensive writing program for Virginia's military veterans and their families, in partnership with the Virginia War Memorial. He also teaches advanced creative writing as a visiting professor at Virginia Commonwealth University's Honors College. David resides in Richmond, near the James River.
To learn more, or to contact David, please go to authordavidlrobbins.com.
Top Customer Reviews
Chief Master Sergeant Vasily Zaitsev ("The Hare") is an expert sniper in the 62nd Army, that force of the Red Army desperately maintaining a toehold in Stalingrad, under siege by the German 6th Army. Zaitsev is so good at his job that he is ordered to establish a sniper school. One of his students is Tania Chernova, an American woman of Russian descent fighting to avenge the execution of her grandparents at the hands of the Nazis. The graduates of The Hare's training become so proficient at killing Germans that the morale of the 6th Army's front-line troops is seriously threatened. Zaitsev becomes a Red Army hero and a winner of the Order of Lenin. As a counter, the Reich's most expert sniper, SS Colonel Heinz Thorvald ("The Headmaster"), is flown from Germany into the Stalingrad battle. His orders - to find and kill The Hare.
There is no superlative too extravagant to describe this book. At 470 pages in paperback, I absorbed it at one sitting on a flight from Washington, DC to Los Angeles. Zaitsev, Chernova and Thorvald were all actual combatants in Stalingrad. Their roles, as well as the movements of both the German and Russian forces in the battle as a whole, are facts lifted from historical sources researched by the author, David Robbins. The insight Robbins gives the reader into the skills and training of the military sniper is absolutely riveting. The action is gritty and realistic. The characters are finely drawn.
One measure of a novel's excellence is its ability to inspire the reader to delve further into the subject. I've just added to my Amazon.com Wish List a history of the Stalingrad siege.
Historical Fiction can be tricky as it is hard to set rules for how closely the Author must follow the facts as he or she knows them. There is no excuse for knowingly writing a story that is error prone and excuse it as fiction, and then call it History when it is easily documented. I do not believe the Author is guilty of this. I do think that any attempt to document all facts surrounding the exploits of a Soviet War Hero as chronicled by their Wartime propaganda mentality is virtually impossible. This is the same military mindset that had the submarine Kurst hitting a 50 year old floating mine, and had those on board alive for days when in fact they had died horrible deaths. This latter event was in peacetime, and still pride required lies that were absurd. During a war, facts often are changed, minimilized or embellished. The management of facts is a major part of any war effort.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the best books I have ever read. It still makes me sad to this day. I will never forget it.Published 19 days ago by Amazon Customer
Fictionalized account of the fuel between the top Russian sniper and his German counterpart. Worth the cost and time.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Haven't as yet had the opportunity to sit down and read it. To be honest there are about 20 books ahead of it.....Published 3 months ago by kleon24
The Battle of Stalingrad told through the interweaving stories of four characters, somewhat centered on a tense, "sniper vs. sniper" battle. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
It was a bit dry for my taste, but not bad especially since it was required reading.Published 6 months ago by Sae
Very interesting read. Made u feel like h were there - unfortunately. Yet there was some hope proffered through the gloom.Published 7 months ago by kingjenks
Very good book. They should have made the movie more true to it.Published 7 months ago by Tom McMullen