From Chicago to Vietnam: A Memoir of War

Michael Duffy - 2016
    The perimeter of the massive Saigon Airbase, Tan Son Nhut, was breached, and fighting raged all morning. Both gritty and intimate, From Chicago to Vietnam tells the powerful story of the ensuing epic battle, the Tet Offensive, from the perspective of one brave American soldier, Michael Duffy, whose life, like so many others, would forever be changed.Duffy's war experience begins when he exits a C-130 cargo plane onto the Tan Son Nhut tarmac--a chaotic scene of blasts, explosions, and small arms fire. Sprinting to a waiting helicopter, he is lifted up and over the city, where he gets a bird's-eye view of Saigon under attack. The helicopter lands on a road outside Bien Hoa Base Camp, and Duffy crawls in under enemy fire, tumbling into a fox-hole under cover of two GIs. Later, he meets up with his younger brother, Danny Duffy, in an ammunition convoy driving up Highway 1 to the village of Xuan Loc.After his brutal one-year tour in Vietnam, Duffy returns to Chicago, where he enjoys a Christmas dinner with his family before enrolling as a freshman at Colorado College. Like many vets, his return from the war would be met with curiosity, indifference, and, at times, scorn. This harrowing memoir was thirty years in the making.

All the Pretty Shoes

Marika Roth - 2011
    Running, starved and shoeless, through the streets of Budapest, ALL THE PRETTY SHOES is the story she survived to write.“Marika Roth’s narrative holds us captive throughout one hell of a ride: betrayal, sexual predators, love affairs, modeling career, kidnapping of her children... Not to be missed!” —Tova Laiter, Producer, The Scarlett Letter and Varsity Blues“A story about the indomitable spirit of a woman faced with unimaginable horrors and impossible odds. Roth tells her extraordinary tale with clarity and a remarkable lack of self-pity.” —Jillian Lauren, Author, SOME GIRLS: MY LIFE IN A HAREM“I remember Marika calling to say she’d discovered a memorial to the atrocity she’d witnessed … I googled it and suddenly the draft of her memoir in my hands felt very, very heavy. This is a powerful book about overcoming the ongoing, chronic victimization that is all too often the prolonged second act of the refugee ordeal.” —Robert Morgan Fisher, Award-Winning Writer“…plucks at an emotional inner chord and serves as a portrayal of hope for the human condition.” —Stefan Pollack, The Pollack PR Marketing Group“I have read books about how people suffered during WWII, like Imre Kertesz who won the Nobel Prize, but none moved me as much as ALL THE PRETTY SHOES. Roth’s style, the way she narrated how cruel life can be, without judging others, truly brought tears to my eyes.” —Vivian Nagy, Hungary“A story of self-discovery, wonderfully told, full of such drama that one can hardly believe that an innocent little girl could endure so much. I couldn’t put it down!” —Mary Stokes-Rees, China“The story of Anne Frank cannot even compare to what Marika went through. A book all teenagers and young adults should read.” —Shelia Durfey, Independent

Kadian Journal: A Father's Story

Thomas Harding - 2014
    Shortly afterwards Thomas began to write. This book is the result.Beginning on the day of Kadian's death, and continuing to the year anniversary, and beyond, Kadian Journal is a record of grief in its rawest form, and of a mind in shock and questioning a strange new reality. Interspersed within the journal are fragments of memory: jewel-bright everyday moments that slowly combine to form a biography of a lost son, and a lost life.It is an extraordinary document, and several things at once: a lucid, raw, and startlingly brave book: a powerful and moving account of a father's grief, and a beautiful tribute to an exceptional son.

A Good Enough Daughter: A memoir

Alix Kates Shulman - 1999
    From her bestselling novel, Memoirs of an Ex-Prom Queen, to her brilliant memoir, Drinking the Rain, she has chronicled what it means to defy the expectations of family and society in order to map one's own life. Now, in this unflinching but tender memoir, she explores what it means to do what is expected of a daughter--discovering in the process the unexpected, complicated joys of going home. Told with the grace, clarity, and insight we have come to expect from her, A Good Enough Daughter is the story of Shulman's difficult journey from dependency to alienation to reconciliation, as she returns home to care for her aging parents in the last years of their lives. The intersection of her own memory with family documents discovered in her parents' house provides the structure for this riveting exploration of her life as a daughter.

Escaping with His Life: From Dunkirk to D-Day & Beyond

Nicholas Young - 2019
    Having survived the retreat to and evacuation from Dunkirk, he volunteered for the newly formed Commandos and took part in their first operation, the raid on the Lofoten Islands. He fought and was captured in Tunisia. He went on the run before his POW camp at Fontanellato was taken over by the Nazis after the September 1943 Italian armistice. He spent six months on the run in the Apennine mountains aided by brave and selfless Italians. Many of whom were actively fighting their occupiers. He eventually reached Allied lines but not before several of his companions were tragically killed by both German and American fire.On return to England he immediately signed up for the invasion of North West Europe and despite being wounded eventually fought through to Germany.It is thanks to his son's research that Major Young's story can now be told. It is an inspiring and thrilling account which demands to be read.

Final Witness: My journey from the holocaust to Ireland

Zoltan Zinn-Collis - 2006
    In Bergen-Belsen concentration camp he survived the inhuman brutality of the SS guards, the ravages of near starvation, disease, and squalor. All but one of his family died there, his mother losing her life on the very day the British finally marched into the camp. Discovered by a Red Cross nurse who described him as ‘an enchanting scrap of humanity’, Zoltan was brought to Ireland and adopted by one of the liberators, Dr Bob Collis, who raised him as his own son on Ireland’s east coast. Now aged 65, Zoltan is ready to speak. His story is one of deepest pain and greatest joy. Zoltan tells how he lost one family and found another; of how, escaping from the ruins of a broken Europe, he was able to build himself a life – a life he may never have had.

Wood, Luck & Survival: The Journey of a Father and his Son Through the Holocaust Horrors

Reuven (Gutkin) Govrin - 2018
    When the German army invaded Riga, Latvian Jewry numbered about 95,000, of which only about 1,000 survived the war. The story of how Wood and luck somehow enabled Max and his father to survive the Holocaust, unlike so many, is riveting. The family business was engaged with forestry and wood, so Max, his older brother, and their father were forced to work in wood for the Nazis, while his mother and little brother were murdered. A harrowing journey replete with painful memories… The book traces their harrowing journey from work camp to work camp, a terrible choice that the father is forced to make, the aftermath of the war in Europe, and finally arrival in Israel. For 65 years Max silently bore the burden of these memories until the author led him on a path of discovery through his painful personal history. Scroll up now and get your copy of Wood, luck & survival!

Born Under a Lucky Star: A Red Army Soldier's Recollections of the Eastern Front of World War II

Ivan Philippovich Makarov - 2020
    That was on his first day at the front.Thrown into an open field to face German tanks and artillery fire, with only rifles and machine guns to defend themselves with, almost 2,000 men of his regiment were wiped out in only six days at the Eastern Front. At this rate, Ivan struggled to comprehend how he would survive the hundreds of battles that lay before him, with death seeming to be the only certainty.In his raw and trenchant memoir, Ivan recounts the terror and despair faced by a Red Army soldier on the Eastern Front.He has no sympathy for Stalin and his incompetent commanders, who sought awards and recognition at the expense of their soldiers’ lives. He simply wanted to serve his country.It is rare to find first-hand accounts of the Great Patriotic War from Red Army soldiers, as many did not survive to tell the tale. For the first time, Ivan reveals his gripping recollections of battles, times, places, and people encountered throughout World War II, from when he was drafted in 1941 until their victory in 1945.These recollections he dared not put on paper until 1992.

Hans Sturm: A Soldier's Odyssey on the Eastern Front

Gordon Williamson - 2015
    However, few can match Hans Sturm in his astonishing rise from a mere private in an infantry regiment, thrown into the bloody maelstrom of the Eastern Front, to a highly decorated war hero. A young man who had displayed fearless heroism in combat, earning him some of Germany's highest military awards, Sturm hated bullies and injustice, and reacted in his normal pugnacious and outspoken manner when confronted with wrongdoing. From striking a member of the feared Sicherheitsdienst for his treatment of a Jewish woman, to refusing to wear a decoration he felt was tainted because of the treatment of enemy partisans, Sturm repeatedly stuck to his moral values no matter what the risk. Even with the war finally over, Sturm's travails would not end for another eight years as he languished in a number of Soviet labour camps until he was finally released in 1953. ** This electronic edition includes 60 black-and-white photographs **

The Long Way Home: The Other Great Escape

John McCallum - 2012
    a great tale with a deep message' George Robertson 'a thrilling escapade' Bournemouth Echo At the age of nineteen, Glasgow-born John McCallum signed up as a Supplementary Reservist in the Signal Corps. A little over a year later, he was in France, working frantically to set up communication lines as Europe once more hurtled towards war. Wounded and captured at Boulogne, he was sent to the notorious Stalag VIIIB prison camp, together with his brother, Jimmy, and friend Joe Harkin. Ingenious and resourceful, the three men set about planning their escape. With the help of Traudl, a local girl, they put their plan into action. In an astonishing coincidence, they passed through the town of Sagan, around which the seventy-six airmen of the Great Escape were being pursued and caught. However, unlike most of these other escapees, John, Jimmy and Joe eventually made it to freedom. Now, due to the declassification of documents under the Official Secrets Act, John McCallum is finally able to tell the thrilling story of his adventure, in which he recaptures all the danger, audacity and romance of one of the most daring escapes of the Second World War.

The Suicide Bride: A mystery of tragedy and family secrets in Edwardian Sydney

Tanya Bretherton - 2019
    He also left behind mysteries that might never be solved. Sociologist Dr Tanya Bretherton traces the brutal story of Ellie, one of many suicide brides in turn-of-the-century Sydney; of her husband, Alicks, and his family; and their three orphaned sons, adrift in the world.From the author of the acclaimed THE SUITCASE BABY - shortlisted for the 2018 Ned Kelly Award, Danger Prize and Waverley Library 'Nib' Award - comes another riveting true-crime case from Australia's dark past. THE SUICIDE BRIDE is a masterful exploration of criminality, insanity, violence and bloody family ties in bleak, post-Victorian Sydney. **Includes an extract from THE SUITCASE BABY**

Approaching Ali: A Reclamation in Three Acts

Davis Miller - 2015
    Now, all these years later, the two friends have an uncommon bond, the sort that can be fashioned only in serendipitous ways and fortified through shared experiences. Miller draws from his remarkable moments with The Champ to give us a beautifully written portrait of a great man physically devastated but spiritually young—playing mischievous tricks on unsuspecting guests, performing sleight of hand for any willing audience, and walking ten miles each way to grab an ice cream sundae. Informed by great literary journalists such as Joan Didion, Tom Wolfe, and Gay Talese, but in a timeless style that is distinctly his own, Miller gives us a series of extraordinary stories that coalesce into an unprecedentedly humanizing, intimate, and tenderly observed portrait of one of the world’s most loved men.

Jumping Over Shadows: A Memoir

Annette Gendler - 2017
    Her Great-Aunt Resi had been married to a Jew in Czechoslovakia before World War II--a marriage that, while happy, created tremendous difficulties for the extended family once the Nazis took over their hometown in 1938, and ultimately did not survive the pressures of the time. Annette and Harry's love, meanwhile, was the ultimate nightmare for Harry's family of Holocaust survivors. Weighed down by the burdens of their family histories, Annette and Harry kept their relationship secret for three years, until they could forge a path into the future and create a new life in Chicago. As time went on, however, Annette found a spiritual home in Judaism--a choice that paved the way toward acceptance by Harry's family, and redemption for some of the wounds of her own family's past.

This Does Not Leave This House

Julie Coons - 2018
     Suffering from physical and mental torment resulting in very low self-esteem, Julie often felt so completely alone during the many struggles of her life that she tried to take her own life. This book is her true story—telling all the secrets she was never allowed to tell to encourage and motivate others to heal their own lives and break the cycle of abuse. Her story shows that there is hope and life after abuse. Now that the secrets are finally out, Julie has found freedom. So can you. This Does Not Leave This House is a raw, poignant, and secret-revealing memoir written to lead a movement to break the silence of abuse and finally end its vicious cycle. With strength and resiliency, Coons provides a voice for the silent abused, letting them know they’re not alone. Justice and hope can prevail. The abused can become victorious. Read the heartbreaking true story of her journey to triumph above overwhelming obstacles.

On Being German: A Personal Journey Into the German Experience

Doris Pena-Cruz - 2021
    In my younger years I avoided that subject, be it in literature or in entertainment, whenever I possibly could. That was not easy. Television was full of programs in which Germans looked stupid and heinous. My own children watched these things with glee; I fled into another room. Since I have always read a lot, I was at least aware of the avalanche of books that were published about the Holocaust. Still, I kept my blinkers on. I firmly told myself that it was not my business, since I was just a child during that time. Sooner or later such an attitude will have to come to an end. It did for me after I fled a difficult marriage and finally began to examine my life. This was a slow process, aided by a patient psychiatrist. Now, years later, I want to write about my life and about the conflicted feelings such a search will cause in a woman of German nationality.