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Book Review: Escape from Sobibor – Richard Rashke

By Donnambr @_mrs_b

About Escape from Sobibor (2012)Escape from Sobibor Book Review: Escape from Sobibor   Richard RashkeOn October 14, 1943, six hundred Jews imprisoned in Sobibor, a secret Nazi death camp in eastern Poland, revolted. They killed a dozen SS officers and guards, trampled the barbed wire fences, and raced across an open field filled with anti-tank mines. Against all odds, more than three hundred made it safely into the woods. Fifty of those men and women managed to survive the rest of the war.


 In this edition of Escape from Sobibor, fully updated in 2012, Richard Rashke tells their stories, based on his interviews with eighteen of the survivors. It vividly describes the biggest prisoner escape of World War II. A story of unimaginable cruelty. A story of courage and a fierce desire to live and to tell the world what truly went on behind those barbed wire fences.   


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Review: Escape from Sobibor

It’s extremely difficult to look at a book like Escape from Sobibor with a critical eye. The usual concerns of characterisation, plot, setting etc don’t come into play. These are facets that cannot be changed if the story is to be told accurately. Therefore, when I review a book like this I have two main considerations: 1) the quality of the writing, 2) the accuracy of the details.

Escape from Sobibor is related in a unique manner, almost as if it were a work of fiction. In this way we are introduced to the men and women whose stories form the basis of this incredible book. Richard Rashke has combined eye witness accounts with a wealth of research to provide a comprehensive account of life at Sobibor.

While I was impressed with Rashke’s narrative, attention to detail and obvious thorough reading and research, I was equally impressed by his respect for the Sobibor survivors and the lengths he went to to try and avoid causing additional distress (above and beyond the clear distress recounting their experiences caused). It is clear he came to care very much about the book but – more importantly – about the people behind the story.

Escape from Sobibor is an incredible book. It tells some of the stories that must be told, that must never be buried or forgotten. There are millions of stories from the victims of the Holocaust that go unheard. We must make all the more effort to honor the voices that could share. Rashke does this beautifully.

Verdict: 5/5

(Book source: Netgalley)

Book Review: Escape from Sobibor – Richard Rashke | Thank you for reading Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dave


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