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Notes of a Sniper: Vassili Zaitsev's Account of the Battle of Stalingrad Hardcover – Jan 2003

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 281 pages
  • Publisher: 2826 Press Inc. (Jan. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615121489
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615121482
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.7 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,539,763 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By David Addison on 22 Jun. 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having enjoyed watching the film,'Enemy at the Gates',I was always keen to read about the man,Vassili Zaitsev himself.His story certainly doesn't disappoint.From his childhood in Siberia,Vassili tells us of how his Grandfather taught him to shoot,and become just as deadly as the wild animals he hunted.This experience was to become his skill,in the battle for Stalingrad,in WW2.He volunteered first,for the Soviet Pacific Fleet,but on hearing the Germans invasion,he immidiately applied for frontline duty.The German invaders also used snipers in the battle,and Vassili gives a really good account,of how to deal with this cunning enemy.The book also contains some dark content,as it publishes warning posters,that any man deserting their post,would immidiately be executed.Especially from the cold blooded tyrant,Stalin.The price I paid for this book,was obviously a huge rip-off,but having read it,I thought it was worth every penny.
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By hazel peverill on 21 Jun. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Absolutely pristine condition-many thanks
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 18 reviews
42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Notes of a Sniper by Vassili Zaitsev, For Us There Was No Land Beyond the Volga 30 Sept. 2006
By Andy Moriarty - Published on
Format: Hardcover
outstanding account by one of the leading snipers of the Red Army.Much more intersting than the movie Enemy at the Gates, which heavily distorts the history, and infinitely better than David Robbins crappy p.o.s. attempt. Zaitsev is good writer who was there during the biggest battle of all time and he gives a blow by blow account of the dirt, the blood, the grime, the smells, when he first arrived he was a unit messenger and he only got the sniper assignment 4 or 5 weeks into the battle. Although he had high scores on the shooting range no one thought to make him a sniper until they saw him shoot a Nazi machine gunner and the Nazi's two loaders, at a range of 600 yards, using a gun with standard sights. Zaitsev reports that he had never seen a rifle with telescopic sights until he was in Stalingrad and he had no idea how to use a sniper rifle. He was a self taught marksman with only a few days of instruction from a graduate of the Moscow Army Sniper School. When his superiors saw his success they ordered him to create a sniper detachment in Stalingrad, and Zaitsev recruited his marksmen on the spot.

Zaitsev was blinded by a mortar shell and was hospitalized in Stalingrad when the battle ended. He heard the captive German army from his hospital bed as they marched by, jeered by the victorious Russian soldiers.

Of the various accounts of Stalingrad I have read, this one gave me the closest feel for the battle from the perspective of a Red Army foot soldier. To find that Zaitsev was a real person, and not a fiction invented by the Red Army propagandists, made for a riveting read.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
This is an absolute must read....... 10 stars 11 April 2007
By David A. Guye - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you saw Enemy at the Gates and enjoyed it then you must read this book. What the movie showed was not all true. This book is outstanding and really tells the story of Vassili Zaitsev, and the type of person and heroe he is. Its wonderful that we can now get this information from the former Soviet Union and learn more about WWII from another perspective.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Amazing first person account 19 Oct. 2009
By Jack L. Walker - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an amazing first person account by one of the most famous heroes of WWII. If you want to learn about the Battle of Stalingrad, skip Enemy at the Gates and read Stalingrad by Antony Beevor, then read this book. Since many consider the battle of Stalingrad as the turning point of the war, then this makes Vasily Zaitsev one of the main players in that turning point. Along with General Chuikov. These two, among others, innovated a strategy for urban warfare that is taught and applied to this day. To me, the author does not come across as a braggart, which someone of his ability could have certainly exhibited. Rather it is a sober and clear account of a "war within a war," the battle fought by snipers, in the most fierce and deadly military battle in history. It is also a testament to toughness, extreme patience, and the will to never give up no matter how bleak things may appear. An excellent read for anyone interested in the "Great Patriotic War" as Stalin called it. Sources out of Russia had been suppressed for so long that it is very interesting to re-evaluate the Great Patriotic War from sources other than German ones.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The real story behind Enemy at the Gates 6 Feb. 2013
By Meaghan - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Having seen the movie Enemy at the Gates, I wanted to read the real Vassili Zaitsev's story and see how it compared. The results didn't surprise me: Enemy at the Gates is hopelessly inaccurate (but still a good movie).

And as for the book? If you are looking for a fast-paced, action-packed war story, you've found it here. Zaitsev is a plain man but he has a good story to tell and he's very direct and honest about what went on and even about his own mistakes and shortcomings. I really got a sense of how hellish Stalingrad must have been during that time, and how incredibly difficult a sniper's job is. I'd never thought about it before. Imagine having to sit for hours or DAYS in some cramped spot (like in a drainage pipe, or under a sheet of iron) without being able to move, lest you give away your position, through heat and cold and thirst and sleep deprivation, and once you decide to fire you only get one chance, and then right away you have to leap up and run like heck to another spot and hope the enemy are bad shots. I came away from this book with great respect for Zaitsev and the men like him.

One thing that surprised me about this book is that it's not really very Russian or very Communist. Zaitsev sounds pretty apolitical: he's a loyal enough Communist and a member of the komsomol, but that's only mentioned in passing. If you changed the people's names, you could be talking about soldiers anywhere.

This book is worth your time, if you like war stories.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
excelente libro 24 Feb. 2013
By H. Montes - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
lo considero como un excelente libro, narra muy realisticamente las stuaciones que enfrentan los francotiradores en combate urbano y precisa la resistencia mental que debe ser observada por ellos para no ser victimado en el proceso
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