Such is the power of the mass media in the 21st century, that there is a danger that one can almost become immune to constant portrayals of man's inhumanity to man. I suppose it is a defence mechanism to protect us from unimaginable horrors. The holocaust was one of the very worst occasions when one nation inflicted sustained barbarity on others and the many personal accounts of it which are available are pressing reminders, if ever we should forget what depths humankind is capable of sinking to.
This relatively short book is essential reading - as a necessary reminder of the horrors inflicted at that dark dark point in man's history. And a reminder that such horrors can and do happen again. What is so remarkable about the book is the matter-of-fact understated way that one man can relate repeated and unrelenting sufferings inflicted upon him, his family and friends, yet without apparent rancour or undue anger. And at the end of everything - he survives, and makes his way in the world.
It's a tale of victory, despite everything, and certainly puts our own relatively minor hardships into perspective.