Colditz high security camp contained every persistent escaper, trouble maker and valuable hostage captured by the Germans in World War II. It was considered escape proof but the very opposite proved to be true. The prisoners pooled their collected talents to create the greatest escape academy of the war. Here, Henry Chancellor tells the prisoners' own story. Many have never spoken before but using over 50 original interviews, the English, French, Dutch and Polish officers, and their guards describe their experiences in the notorious castle, and their escape across Nazi Germany. It is a story of ingenuity and daring, a game of wit between captives and captors.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Claiming anything, let alone a book on the Colditz story, as "the definitive history", is certainly a bold move. But since Henry Chancellor was the man behind the acclaimed British television series, Escape from Colditz, it might just be true. Certainly it is an enthralling read, although given its subject matter it could hardly be anything else. Colditz, more prosaically known to the German military as "Oflag 4C", was the supposedly escape-proof medieval German fortress from which over 300 men during the Second World War attempted to escape, and from which 32 made a "home-run". A small but hugely morale-boosting figure. With tragic heroism, some of these successful escapees, having risked life and limb getting back to the home country, then returned eagerly to the war only to be killed in battle. Chancellor's book represents 76 interviews carried out over a course of 14 years, and so promises to be exhaustive. It also corrects some of the errors in the classic but not always flawless memoirs of former prisoners such as Major Pat Reid. He is also good on adding colourful if tangential details, such as the fact that the great expansion of castle took place under the reign of Augustus the Strong of Saxony in the 17th century, a man who fathered no fewer than 354 offspring. The heart of the book, however, is the accounts of escape by the men themselves who lived to tell the tale. This is a history book that will make your hands clammy with fear and excitement. One can also relish the humour with which these old soldiers recall their days and nights of danger. One of them attempted to escape disguised as a woman. "But I had made the great mistake of filling it [his bra] with biscuits, in an attempt not to waste space. Unfortunately by the time I had crawled through the tunnel the biscuits had turned to crumbs and everything was sagging." So, not only a thrilling and inspiring history, but a useful guide to cross-dressing too: don't keep biscuits in your bra.-- Christopher HartReview:
'Crammed full of compelling nuggets' -- Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Harper Perennial, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0060012862
Book Description Harper Perennial. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0060012862 We guarantee all of our items - customer service and satisfaction are our top priorities. Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Bookseller Inventory # TM-0060012862
Book Description Harper Perennial, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110060012862
Book Description Harper Perennial. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0060012862 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.0010909
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97800600128611.0