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Showing 1-10 of 51 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 81 reviews
on March 28, 2017
What a man! What a story! I was blown away. We couldn't put the book down. This one is a keeper; we won't be donating it, as we have so many other books. I have nothing but praise for the hero in this book, he truly was one of a kind.
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on February 5, 2012
I knew a little about Raoul Wallenberg and Adolf Eichmann before I read this book. I was aware that Wallenberg saved thousands of Jews during the war and I knew enough to name my son Raoul in his honor.
What I didn't know was how much he risked his life doing so, his struggles with the SS and Hungarian Arrow Cross, and his mysterious disappearance after the Soviets arrested him.

This book tells the story of the Jews in Hungary during the war, their struggle to survive, first under an anti-semitic regime, then under the Nazis themselves, and finally under the local Nazis in the form of the Arrow Cross party, the evil that is Eichmann, and the desperate efforts of a few to save the Jews. Although anti-semitism was rampant in Hungary before the war, the Jews were somewhat spared the fate their brethren suffered in Poland, Ukraine, Netherlands, and other German-occupied countries during the war. Until 1944 when the Nazis, in particular Adolf Eichmann, decided that all Jews in Hungary, at all costs, should all be deported to the death camps.
In came the Swede Wallenberg, who together with other diplomats in Budapest, tried to save as many Jews as they can by issuing (sometimes) fake documents to make it appear that the jews were under the protection of Sweden or Switzerland. In a continuous tug of war with Eichmann and the notorious Arrow Cross thugs, Wallenberg would eventually succeed in saving around 100,000 Jews from deportation to the death camps. Sometimes he would save the victims in the nick of time, just before they board the train to Auschwitz, or just before they were to be shot.
The last few months before the Russians came were especially horrifying with the Hungarian Nazis murdering and terrorizing the Jews in a reign of terror.

The final third of the book tells what happened to the main protagonists Eichmann and Wallenberg, and some of the survivors, after the war. Everyone knows what happened to Eichmann, but unfortunately the end of Wallenberg's story remains a mystery, partly due to the Russian's stubborn refusal to cooperate, and partly due to the Swedish government's spineless abandonment of one of it's most heroic and remarkable citizens.
This is a well-written and inspiring book and I highly recommend it.
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on March 14, 2014
Kershaw has done it! There are acts of bravery in wartime;they are usually accounts of the battlefield or a resistance group. Rarely has there ever been such prolonged exposure to danger on behalf of the persecuted as Raoul Wallenberg's rescue of thousands of Hungarian Jews. For months this Swedish diplomat repeatedly 'stuck his head in the mouth of the lion' to save those headed for the Nazi death camps. Battling the Nazis and the Hungarian fascist Arrow Cross, this determined envoy pressed ahead where fainter men refused to venture. This gripping account is in a class of its own.This brave Swede remains a sterling example of self-giving without thought of personal risks. Read it and be inspired!
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on December 23, 2014
Once again Alex Kershaw has written a searing account of a well know period of our history. Through the use of first person accounts, Alex bring the Holocaust alive beyond the horrific numbers that are hard to grasp. The Envoy is a tough read at times, but hard to put down.
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on February 18, 2014
This book was a tremendous record of such a dreadful tragedy. It is not something you could enjoy but it was such a well written and moving account that i have now listened and re-listened to in the audio version . The astounding record of Raoul Wallenberg is and should be an inspiring example of incredible courage And the Jews themselves are also an example of such tremendous courage. It is an amazing
thing that those who went through that horror and survived should have ever found the strength to do so and they like Wallenberg should all have been celebrated and cared for and honoured and never forgotten.
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on January 20, 2015
A story very well worth knowing, presented in dramatic fashion. Raoul Wallenberg was a quiet hero, and this book creates a greater level of understanding about him as a person, as well as setting forth what he did. I would recommend this to anyone interested in hearing about the fate of the Hungarian Jewish community at the end of WWII, which is an even more moving story in light of the current level of anti-Semitism there.
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on October 31, 2014
One of the most throught-provoking and enlightening books I've ever read. I had long heard of Raoul Wallenberg, but had no idea of the extent of his bravery and depth of caring. What the Nazis during during the Holocaust was horrible, but to learn of the day-to-day misery of those living in Budapest was beyond comprehension. I know that this book will stay with me forever, and I recommend it, especially as a part of a history class in school.
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on March 21, 2014
Before reading this book, I thought I had read enough about the Holocaust. I was mistaken. I am grateful to the author for this book about a beautiful man.

Wallenberg habitually risked great danger, but the author explains that he understood fear. Even if scared, he astonished people with a determination that sometimes won over foes as well as friends. It may seem ridiculous to say that Wallenberg was a saint, but read his history and find out.
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on December 1, 2010
I have read several books about the Holocaust, and yet, found The Envoy to be very informative and well-written. The Envoy was so gripping, that I could not put it down. Alex is a wonderful author, and I have enjoyed several of his books, and look forward to reading his entire collection. I strongly recommend his book, "Escape From The Deep"; another "can't put down" book. Alex writes about brave, courageous people with compelling stories that should be remembered and passed on from generation to generation.
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on October 17, 2012
Wow, this book really crystalized the plight of the Jewish people during the holocaust more than anything I have read recently and I have read several books on the subject. It can be agonizing to read and to imagine what these people went through. The introduction a heroic diplomat Raoul Wallenberg just adds to the narrative of good vs. evil, bravery vs. cowardice. I just wish it ended better for all. Truer words have never been been more appropriate, "no good deed goes unpunished.
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