- Paperback: 572 pages
- Publisher: Delphinium Books; Revised and Updated edition (November 19, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1480458511
- ISBN-13: 978-1480458512
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.4 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (374 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #130,183 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Escape from Sobibor: Revised and Updated Edition Paperback – November 19, 2013
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From Library Journal
Information on the Sobibor concentration camp was sketchy at best until Rashke tracked down and interviewed as many of the survivors as possible. The result, said LJ's reviewer, is "the first reliable history of this camp. A well-researched and well-written work" (LJ 10/1/82).
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
“A journalistic account in the tradition of Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood.” —Choice
“The authoritative version of the breakout from the Nazi experimentation camp at Sobibor. . . . Gives us a very good idea of how the will to survive can lead quite ordinary people to surmount the most extraordinary obstacles.” —The Jerusalem Post
“This moving and angry book deserves to be read.” —The Washington Post
“A unique, unforgettable, deeply moving and effective account of a death camp.” —Detroit Jewish News
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Top Customer Reviews
=== The Good Stuff ===
* Rashke, for the most part, stays on topic. He wavers a bit between a history of the Holocaust, a history of Sobibor, and a history of the specific escape and insurrection. To be fair, these topics are all so interlinked as to make it impossible to talk about one without the others, but the problem is one of scope. Some topics just refuse to be limited to a couple hundred pages, and you can almost feel Rashke fighting with what to include and what to exclude. For the most part, he does a great job of it.
* My favorite part of the book was almost the afterword, where he relates the details and difficulties in setting up the specific interviews with the survivors highlighted in the book. After 40 years, you can still feel the paranoia (that is not the right word, but I don't know what is) of the victims in dealing with everyday society. I can not summarize their individual responses, but they are a fascinating read.
* If it were up to me, this book, or a similar one, would be required reading for every high school student. It is a fascinating look at what humans are capable of, and that refers to both the Nazis and their victims. The cruelty and sadism of the Nazis in an amazing contrast to the flicker of hope that the camp inmates somehow kept within them. We also get a feel for the horrible tradeoffs the inmates were forced to make- save yourself or help others type issues.
* The writing style was easy to read (although the content was not). Mercifully, Rashke takes the time to transcribe and interpret the survivor's comments, sparing us the long quoted portions of text that I honestly find tough to read.
=== The Not-So-Good Stuff ===
* The narrative gets a little choppy at time, and it was tough to keep some of the events straight. The real problem was that the narrative was not really in a chronological order, but more in individual plot lines-which were sort of interconnected. It was still understandable, just took a bit of work. Many of the named characters also appear under different names, further causing confusion, especially if you don't read the book in one continuous flow.
* With books of this sort, there is always the question of accuracy. We sort of have to take in on faith that the recollections of the survivors are true. I would not accuse them of any sort of willful fabrications, but it very difficult to expect human memory to accuractly recall horrific events of 40 years previous. Much of the background history in the book suffers from similar problems- the events were not especially well documented in the first place-or purposely obscured, and time has fogged over many of the memories.
=== Summary ===
This is a fantastic tale of horrific events in human history, and captures some of the best and worst of human nature. I have read a number of these books, and found them all interesting, although they concentrate on different aspects of the holocaust. For readers further interesting in this topic, here are two of my favorites: The Last Jews in Berlin and Auschwitz: A Doctor's Eyewitness Account
The material in this book, while not sensationalized, is somewhat graphic and violent in nature.
Most riveting was the escape preparation and how it was carried out.The relative few who escaped found no end to their travails as they had to contend with pursuing Germans and the bloodthirsty,anti Semitic Poles only too eager to betray their former neighbors for some whisky, a few coins or a kilo of sugar..
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Sobibor was a Nazi Jewish killing camp.
Easy to read. Hard to put down.Read more
This is a book for a serious researcher or the inguisitive of Nazi Germany.Read more