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Waldek, The Boy who Defied the Nazis (Thriller) Kindle Edition
The most sold in the history of Amazon in Spanish.
Waldek, The Boy who Defied the Nazis (La Búsqueda in Spanish) chronicles the dramatic and heroic story of Waldek Grodek, who experienced first-hand and at a very young age the German occupation of his native Poland. Many decades later, while visiting the UN offices that granted compensation to the survivors of the Nazi concentration camps, Waldek reflects on the events that started when he was made prisoner and taken to Auschwitz and Mauthausen and, in the years following his liberation, subjected him to the whims of European and Latin American totalitarian regimes, international espionage and the Mossad. Waldek Grodek is a memorable character whose unique perspective and amazing life story deserves to be told.
After more than 154 weeks, Waldek, The Boy who Defied the Nazis (La búsqueda) still occupies the top 10 ranking on Amazon Spanish language. A thriller that is well worth reading.
Another book by the same author in English language: THE MANUSCRIPT, The Secret. Recently published
"Waldek Grodek survived not only Auschwitz and Mauthausenbut life itself and despite all his tribulations was able to banish hatred fromhis heart: My life was hard but I had to free myself from hatred or I would end uphating the whole world." MarleneMoleon (Editor, Eriginal Books)
"Blanca Miosi draws the different scenes with perfecttechnique, grabs the reader´s attention and introduces settings, characters andsequences with perfect equilibrium."Jose Luis Palma (Author)
"A beautiful andhaunting book." Violeta Balián (Author)"If you don't read WALDEK, you'll still in shadows. Blanca Miosi anemergent writer rich in surprises." New York Times Books.
From the Author
- ASIN : B00I6M4YRE
- Publication date : August 2, 2014
- Language : English
- File size : 735 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 245 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,186,743 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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I have read several Miosi's novels. She is a great storyteller, but this one is her MASTERPIECE.
The novel begins with the story of a Polish Catholic child, her husband in real life, which was in the Nazi concentration camps. Anyone could say: Another sad and devastating history of concentration camps! But no, in this novel the story begins just after that. How to survive? What gives meaning to life? It is the search for meaning what defines the story.
“Waldek” is a heartbreaking and intense historical thriller.
My comments on the book are: Waldek, the subject of the book has many experiences. It is almost hard to believe that such could happen to one person. But read Jack Eisner's book, "The Survivor," and you know it's possible. To me the problem Waldek has is he is no better than the Nazi's he used to hate. After all he collaborates with two of them who are SS members known to be especially cruel. He becomes like them. Why? After going and seeing what he saw, yet he would look the other way and form an alliance with them. This is despicable to me, but this makes the book interesting. The SS Nazi woman Helga said she followed orders for her survival. I don't agree with her choice. Did Waldek make an agreement for his survival? It's still a personal choice each one should be responsible for. Waldek to me was a person who always sought his one advantage. Being with many women over the years without being faithful to any of them including Blanca Miosi if it's true that she was with him for 30 years, which to me makes him a selfish man. No wonder he could compromise and enter an agreement with two ex-nazi SS officers. The real hero's of the book was the Mossad who did not give up in tracking these criminals. To say Waldek defied the Nazi's is to me an overstatement of his character. He got caught planning to defy them. All of this my opinion of course.
Thanks to the author for having her novel competently translated into English-- I would not have discovered Waldek otherwise on my Kindle, as live in Northern Africa.
Top reviews from other countries
From the time 14-year-old Waldek joins a Polish resistance movement against the Nazis and is confined to the hell and senseless brutality of concentration camps to the final pages of the book, “Waldek” is a reminder that evil walks in human form. There is no escape from evil and unjust political agendas in this life.
As a Christian, I know God is real, is in control, and this earth is not our home. Only when we reach the throne of Jesus in Heaven will we find perfect justice and kindness. However, as a Christian, I am also as powerless as Waldek to explain how a just and mighty God allowed the evil of Holocaust and Nazi death camps.
What Waldek attributes to “luck” in his survival and subsequent life, I see as God’s blessings and protection. But the fact remains that author Blanca Miosi’s incredible book is a “must read” for every person, regardless of political or religious beliefs. If we don’t learn from history, we repeat it. These evil pages of world history must never be written again in new blood.
Waldek began his life as a seemingly ordinary boy in a normal family, but the life Waldek lives is anything but ordinary. Waldek’s story begins in Poland, the land of his birth, before it is devastated by the destruction wrought by the Nazis. At the age of fourteen, enraged to see his country being ruled by the Nazis, Waldek joins the Polish resistance. He and his young comrades are caught and captured and Waldek ends up spending the rest of the war being shunted from one concentration camp to another, including Auschwitz.
Waldek suffers torture and near starvation, and is a witness to the horrors of the holocaust. He sees so much atrocity that, eventually, it ceases to affect him. (We can only feel so much pain before the brain shuts off our feelings in order that we will survive it. This is why so many survivors of trauma are unable to fully recall their experiences and only do so in ‘flashbacks’ or nightmares. The memories are buried so that we can survive them.)
When the war is over and Waldek is freed, he knows that he must forget or he will not be able to go on living because he will be consumed by hatred and the need for revenge. He makes a conscious decision not to think about the things he has seen and experienced.
When he found himself living in a Poland ruled by a communism he could not abide, he made his escape into Germany and from there to a new life in Peru. In any ordinary life, the story would end here with a happy new beginning after all that trauma. Not so for Waldek. I don’t want to spoil this story by saying any more about the series of events which happen to Waldek throughout his life. All I will say is that I found deeply moving and inspiring, his courage to keep on picking himself up; his tenacity and determination to survive all that life throws at him; and enormous compassion for the moral choices he had to make which meant compromising his deeply held convictions.
Waldek’s life was irrevocably harmed by so many, most especially the Nazis (and long after the war ended), but the unflinching spirit of the man survived.
On the surface this is the story of one man’s life-long quest to live in peace; free from the ravages that wars wreak on the lives of those who live through them. At its heart is a profound exposition of the terrible dilemmas some are faced with when the only choices are between two evils. A must-read.
All lives are extraordinary but some (be by design, by good or bad luck or by fate) are more extraordinary than the great majority. This is one of them. Waldek was born in the wrong place at the wrong time (or maybe not, it depends on your point of view).
Being born in Poland and being a teenager at the time of Hitler’s invasion is not very lucky. His decision to be actively engaged in the resistance (however modest form it could take at such young age) could be seen as the first of many unwise (or at least detrimental to his own well-being) decisions he would take over his life. It lands him in a concentration camp (first Auschwitz and then Mauthausen). He manages to cope with his experience by focusing on survival at all costs and trying not to think too far back or ahead. This portion of the book is fascinating but hard to read, no matter how many books on the subject and personal accounts you have read before. Indeed it’s true that each person’s suffering is different to anybody else’s, and so are the defence mechanisms they use to survive.
I will not go into detail about all the adventures Waldek goes through in his life, but let me say he travels to South America, he sees success but also poverty, he is forced to live in circumstances not of his choosing more than once, but he survives.
One of the qualities of this book as that it succeeds in not turning the protagonist into a hero or a Saint. He remains a human being, who might not fully understand or like what he feels he has to do, who is not always consistent, and who loves and hates at times against his best interests and irrationally. He remains a complex and credible human being, even if not always a likeable one. Personally we might question some of his decisions, his expressed thoughts and ideas, and wonder how many of his sometimes surprising reactions and attachments might relate to his early traumatic experiences, although he never allows himself any excuses and pushes on.
Novels like this one that take place in recognisable historical times and situation, make us question what would we do. And if we’re honest with ourselves, we might not like the answers we get. Would we be more generous or less? Would we take more risks, or fewer? Would we be as naïve? Would be have pursued justice at all cost (even our own), or decided on forgiveness? Can we truly know?
This being a first-person narration it presents a very specific perspective on the events and we can’t but question how much the narrator tells us and how much he censures. I did feel that there were many things I didn’t know or heard about, and those will keep me thinking, and that’s something I appreciate in a book.
However accurate we might believe all the details are, the story is a page turner, and no matter what our personal feelings for the protagonist might be, we want to know what happens to him and try to solve his puzzle. Blanca Miosi writes fluidly, with enough detail to allow us to create a mental picture of the locations and people, and she is particularly skilled at making us hear Waldek as if he was sitting next to us telling us his story. I understand that the author tried at first to publish the story (of her now dead husband) as a personal account and was told by a publishing company that those did not sell very well and they would only be interested if it were a novel. Several years of hard work resulted in this book. The novel is not only Waldek’s journey through life, but also Blanca Miosi’s search for her literary voice, and it is a success in both accounts. If you dare to go on this journey with Waldek and the author, I’m sure you won’t regret it. See what you discover.
throughout the story. The events that came to him when going to America at the end of the book were beyond belief and would be better not including them.It was a story too far.
However i think it would make a great film with some tweeking here and there