Comrades of War (Danish) Paperback – 1 Apr 1968
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An iconic war novel; a sobering depiction of war's brutalities, and the violence and inhumanity that the history books leave out. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Born in 1917 in Fredensborg, Denmark, Sven Hassel joined the merchant navy at the age of 14. He did his compulsory year's military service in the Danish forces in 1936 and then, facing unemployment, joined the German army. He served throughout World War II on all fronts except North Africa. When the war ended in 1945 he was transferred between Russian, American and French prison camps, and upon returning to Denmark, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for treason. He began writing Legion of the Damned during his time as a prisoner of war. His fourteen World War II books, which draw on his own encounters and experiences as a soldier, have sold over 53 million copies worldwide and have been published in more than 50 countries. He peacefully passed away in Barcelona in 2012, where he had resided since 1964. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
There is an interesting depiction of life on the homefront in Germany as well as the usual combat scenes in the East. There's also a murder mystery sub-plot and Tiny's courtship, one chilling and the other side splitting. The story of the zebra-man is strangely moving coming as it does in the middle of one of the knockabout sessions between Tiny and Heide.
The only complaint is with the translation which is a bit too mid-Atlantic Scandinavian; whoever thought of roller conveyor as a translation for Rollbahn? Still, that and a few other awkward phrases do not detract from the overall narrative drive of the novel. We see both the horror of war at the front and the side-effects back home - while some live the high-life in secret bars others are reduced to corpse robbing to survive and informers coem into their own.
With Legion of the Damned and Wheels of Terror I would rank this as one of the 'essential' Hassels.
There is much more character development, there are even some soft moments, a thing almost unbeliavable in his books.
Of course, the usual mayhem also happens a lot.
Bear in mind, however, that, like all of his books, this book is everything BUT historically accurate... What makes one sometimes annoyed is the fact that publishers, ALL THE TIME, say that his books are based "on real events he testified"....
No same group of soldiers could have endured - and survived -, for years on end, the absurd, terrifying, humorous, chaotic situations described in his book. Simple as that. I will not even mention impossible geographical situations....
ALso, ther eis the old doubt that Sven Hassel NEVER fought in World War II, never went to Russia, never fired a gun..., and tht he was a Danish Gestapo-informer named Borge Villy Redsted Pedersen. It's all fake, even LEGION OF THE DAMNED (that unabashed attempt to rip off NOTHING NEW ON WESTERN FRONT) is fake.
However, the merit in his books are the humor, the anti-belic statements, their anti-heroes, the comic situations, the sheer tragedy of it all. And this book has it in spades.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A tale of war and the depravity of common soldiers who only wish to survive the horrors and return home.Published 3 months ago by Dai
A gift for a friend. It arrived early and was one of a set he has enjoyed and not been able to get more of so he was very pleased. He is re-reading them all numerous times!Published 15 months ago by J. E. Land