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The Man They Killed on Christmas Day Paperback – 29 Jul 2013

3.5 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 102 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (29 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1492282596
  • ISBN-13: 978-1492282594
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 0.6 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 844,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Catalin Gruia is a veteran journalist who has written and reported for the Romanian edition of National Geographic for over 10 years. He is currently Editor in Chief of National Geographic Traveler and Deputy Editor in Chief of National Geographic Romania.


Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
I was 12 years old back in december 1989 when Revolution burst out.
Christmas lost its magic.
The riot in the street and the sound of fireguns shots replaced the magic with terror.
Still, unvoiced joy made its way through adults'eyes, while an anxious silence grabbed everybody.
Unlike adults, I experienced some kind of a paradoxal feeling of regret for the dethroned dictator.
In school I was thaught to respect him. He was some kind of hero turning the very idea of justice into something touchable.
All of a sudden the handsome, smiling man whose neverfailing portrait throned on every school classroom wall was caught.
Strangely, on TV I saw he was old and helpless. I felt sorry for him.

I wondered how was it possible for such old helpless man to have control over a country of people who hated him??
How was it still possible for us, the young ones, to like him, though??
Reading Catalin Gruia's book I come to get the whole picture and the explanations I needed to solve out the paradox.
Catalin has the power to synthetise and restore a complicated long story by emphasizing the key moments and to equally provide the reader with the detailed and juicy insights to keep him / her on the edge of the seat.

He has a great capacity to sense out the essential and combine journalistic objective narration with interesting reflections and surprising details.
For instance, he draws attention on the enactment of a law replacing the term Mr./Mrs/MS with Comrade/Citizen or the law that limited the circulation of cars on Sunday by odd/vs/even plate numbers every other week.
These may look like fiction stories, but were actually enacted and experienced in real life, less than 30 years ago.

I found this book very useful and easy to read.
I was answered questions I have asked myself and I have also found essential information hard to dig for and select on my own.
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It was an excellent account I can partly relate to. Being brought up in a totalitarian regime I experienced some similarities, although it wasn't as bad as in Romania. I have read several books about these 2 terrible dictators and the bad legacy they left behind. The suffering, the sickness including Cholera in some remote part, AIDS and disability due to the enforced population exposure program. My only negative comment about this book is, that I wish it was longer. For the sake of future generations, it is important to revive the past in books and it is a good learning curve for them not to make the
same mistakes in the future.
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While it's a truism that all of the people can't be fooled all of the time this account proves they can be fooled for 25years.
All the failures were put at the feet of one man. The sycophants around him panicked and shot him before their role was revealed.
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A history of the typical abuse of power in a socialist state, indeed socialism's typical story. This gives the background to the executions describing the capitalist demands of the socialist leader, his costly follies, ego-maniacal personality, etc. etc. It could be an extreme of the Champagne socialists foisted on the UK over the years!
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This was a very disappointing purchase. Much too short, it reads as if written by somebody who did very basic research and no more. Catalin Gruia has nothing of note to contribute to the Ceausescu story. I'm at a loss to know how this book was considered worth publishing.
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I found this to be an interesting read as my knowledge of the politics was virtually nil. I did have a work colleague who had spent many holidays in Romania and truly loved the place and the people. I am sure that it was his influence that stimulated my desire to learn more.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I stumbled upon this book whilst trawling through the kindle store and I'm glad I did. I was interested to read this account of the events of Christmas 1989 because during the summer of that year, I visited Romania as a tourist. Whilst touring this beautiful country, I had no clue as to what would happen there a mere 4 months later. Although this account is very sparse, (it's written by a journalist in a very journalistic style) it gives a very good outline and has made me seek out more titles on the subject. Also, it can easily be read in one sitting! A good place to start research
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