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We Die Alone: A WWII Epic of Escape and Endurance Paperback – August 1, 1999

4.5 out of 5 stars 1,020 ratings

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Paperback, August 1, 1999
$16.99
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

If this story of espionage and survival were a novel, readers might dismiss the Shackleton-like exploits of its hero as too fantastic to be taken seriously. But respected historian David Howarth confirmed the details of Jan Baalsrud's riveting tale. It begins in the spring of 1943, with Norway occupied by the Nazis and the Allies desperate to open the northern sea lanes to Russia. Baalsrud and three compatriots plan to smuggle themselves into their homeland by boat, spend the summer recruiting and training resistance fighters, and launch a surprise attack on a German air base. But he's betrayed shortly after landfall, and a quick fight leaves Baalsrud alone and trapped on a freezing island above the Arctic Circle. He's poorly clothed (one foot is entirely bare), has a head start of only a few hundred yards on his Nazi pursuers, and leaves a trail of blood as he crosses the snow. How he avoids capture and ultimately escapes--revealing that much spoils nothing in this white-knuckle narrative--is astonishing stuff. Baalsrud's feats make the travails in Jon Krakauer's Mt. Everest classic Into Thin Air look like child's play. In an introduction, Stephen Ambrose calls We Die Alone a rare reading experience: "a book that I absolutely cannot put down until I've finished it and one that I can never forget." This amazing book will disappoint no one. --John J. Miller

From Library Journal

This 1955 volume is one of the most remarkable survival stories ever written. Jan Baalsrud was the only survivor of a Norwegian commando team ambushed by the Nazis during World War II. Wounded and with the Germans in pursuit, Baalsrud escaped and miraculously fought his way through the Norwegian tundra to a distant village, where he was saved by locals who helped spirit him to Sweden. Baalsrud suffered frostbite and snowblindness, came through an avalanche, and lived to tell the tale. This edition has a new introduction by Citizen Soldiers' author Stephen Ambrose.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ The Lyons Press; 1st edition (August 1, 1999)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 272 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1558219730
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1558219731
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 12.2 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.5 x 0.75 x 8.25 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,020 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
1,020 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on March 20, 2012
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Top reviews from other countries

Tony K
5.0 out of 5 stars An astonishing account of one man's survival, for weeks in the Norwegian Artic wilderness.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on December 3, 2018
3 people found this helpful
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CriticalMass
4.0 out of 5 stars Triumph over adversity in every sense
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on February 1, 2011
2 people found this helpful
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Hugh
2.0 out of 5 stars Long book for a short story
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on November 24, 2020
Nicholas K
5.0 out of 5 stars The human spirit pitted against a pitiless climate and enemy
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on January 14, 2021
One person found this helpful
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SatSea
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on June 21, 2021