- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 943 KB
- Print Length: 210 pages
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B005F9YENU
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,180,848 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Anna's story Kindle Edition
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Stories of exiles are the same, yet unique for each individual and family, and the scars of war and persecution linger
Anna’s story is of one family's life during the war years and escape prior to the invasion of Latvia in WW 2. Her family’s determination to survive is of global proportions. Such journeys of desperation and escape describe the Latvian diaspora scattered worldwide. As one reads such memoirs of the survivors it is easy to get lost in the adventure since for the reader it is only words. It is easy to miss the reality that these are the minority of iron willed determination and luck who survived to tell the tale. For them it was a daily sequence of harrowing ghastly life changing experiences. More profound is the immensity of the exodus, for Anna and her family were not alone. Along with her were tens of thousand Latvians, hundreds of thousand Balts and millions of “borderland” folk outrunning their Russian ‘liberators’.
The book is anecdotal as if compiled from a diary. As such it’s focus is very personal. Yet in her passages the subtle insights and background colors tell the broader tale. They speak of invaders and colonialists and no food or medicine, interrogations, husbands disappearing, whole families in cattle cars and gone forever, Latvian Legionnaires marched off to their forest graves and bombs from the sky seeking indiscriminate death. These are such alien tales that the mind brackets them into the fiction of Hollywood.
Most engrossing for me personally were some of the place names of Anna’s life as Mezotne, Ventspils, Gulbene for I had heard them before from my parent's lips. Even Dresden where my mother arrived as the bombs started to fall, apparently a day ahead of Anna. Of Esslingen and other d.p camps among which I was born, and the cruise liners from hell, General Something-or-other; the converted Liberty ships that brought Anna to Australia and us past the Statue of Liberty.
The final chapter is by and of Anna’s son continuing the Latvian legacy and is just as colossally stunning. One man’s clandestine efforts, sneaking across borders, battlefields, matching wits with the KGB and repeatedly going in harms way to assist the Latvian nation in climbing out of it’s 50 year hell back into independence. James Bond is fabrication, this is real.
This book is not the finest literature to be had, but it most certainly reveals the finest in human spirit, perseverance and allegiance to one’s culture. It is a timely read as one watches the Ukraine and imagines the fresh graves and cattle car wheels being lubricated and it’s victims running from slaughter.