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The Assassination of Heydrich Audiobook

The Assassination of Heydrich: Hitler's Hangman and the Czech Resistance

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Publisher's Summary

If you only listen to one book about what it felt like to be present during the worst time in modern human history, a time when your life could be snuffed out for having the mere thought of opposition against the Nazi regime, this should be the book. It is told by survivors and by one of the greatest survivors of them all, Jan Wiener.

©2012 Zuzana Wiener (P)2016 Irie Books

What the Critics Say

"Jan Wiener's fascinating, well-documented book tells of the heroic exploits of various Czech men and women, most of whom paid for their resistance with their lives. Above all it gives a detailed, documented account of the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, the most gruesome of the Nazi murderers, by Czech resisters parachuted from London but aided in their task by the Czech underground." (William L. Shirer, author of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Zach Galvin 11-30-16
    Zach Galvin 11-30-16
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    "Great read for history or military buffs"
    Any additional comments?

    The Assassination of Heydrich: Hitler's Hangman and the Czech Resistance by Jan Wiener is a comprehensive telling of the sufferings of Czech people during Nazi occupation as well as the Czech resistances valliant efforts to thwart the Nazis.
    Jan Wiener tells his own story of WWII as well as that of his countrymen. The chapters alternate between the author’s tale of escaping Czechoslovakia, his family’s tragedies and his experiences as a POW in Italy and that of the united effort to rid Czechoslovakia of one of Hitler’s worst. I found the story layout confusing, and I would have preferred a straight telling of the Czechoslovakian Resistance.
    In general I love military stories. I really enjoyed the story of the RAF’s assassination plot and how the town came together to protect the men involved. I was less interested in the author’s personal war story, and the recap at the end was redundant. I did appreciate how the author’s story eventually intersects the story of Heydrich’s assassination.
    Mark Kamish admirably narrated the book. His intonations, pronunciation, and character voices helped to keep straight the vast number of people in the book. He compels listeners to feel more of the horrific atrocities endured by the townfolk than the mere words on the page convey.

    The Assassination of Heydrich: Hitler's Hangman and the Czech Resistance is an interesting take on the bravery of the Resistance fighters and their supporters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Xkoqueen 11-30-16
    Xkoqueen 11-30-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Fascinating Tale of the Czech Resistance in WWII"
    What made the experience of listening to The Assassination of Heydrich the most enjoyable?

    The narration made the book considerably more interesting given the subject matter.


    Any additional comments?

    The Assassination of Heydrich: Hitler's Hangman and the Czech Resistance by Jan Wiener is a comprehensive telling of the sufferings of Czech people during Nazi occupation as well as the Czech resistances valliant efforts to thwart the Nazis.
    Jan Wiener tells his own story of WWII as well as that of his countrymen. The chapters alternate between the author’s tale of escaping Czechoslovakia, his family’s tragedies and his experiences as a POW in Italy and that of the united effort to rid Czechoslovakia of one of Hitler’s worst. I appreciated how the story layout broke up the story into digestible parts. The author’s personal struggles through the war were indicative of so many others during that horrific period.
    I have heard plenty about the French Resistance, but I had heard nothing of the Czech Resistance previously. Now that I’m out of school, I find history to be a more interesting subject, however, it can still be dry in its presentation. Between Wiener’s story layout and narrator Mark Kamish’s presentation of the story, the audiobook help my attention from start to finish. In fact, I listened to the book in its entirety on one long road trip. The narration really brought the story to life.
    I don’t usually listen to credits and author notes, but I didn’t have a chance to turn off the audiobook since I was driving. I was so glad that I was “stuck” listening. The author’s notes and comments from friends and coworkers were helpful and meaningful.
    The Assassination of Heydrich: Hitler's Hangman and the Czech Resistance is a worthy read whether or not you’re a history buff. In addition to expanding your knowledge of WWII it will heighten your empathy and make you thankful for all those who serve their country.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Norma Miles 11-29-16
    Norma Miles 11-29-16 Member Since 2016
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    ""Red posters on the walls ...""
    Any additional comments?

    A truly remarkable book.
    There is everything here - a story far more suspenseful than most fictional thrillers, political intrigue, courage of a type almost unknowable not just by a few but a whole city, compassion and kindness, raw emotion told from the outside and spoken from the heart, and cruelty, evil and so many deaths. I have known the story of Heydrich's death and the terrible aftermath for a long time now despite the reticence of the history books to focus on this cruelly oppressed and neglected area. The dreadful retributions following the assassination had been carefully documented in my previous readings and yes, the story affected me deeply. But, dare I say it? - it was only numbers and happening at a time of so much other violence and death. By his thorough descriptions of the people themselves, the author brings them powerfully alive again so the stories are told of people we have grown to know, making their deaths personal and so, so much more dreadful. Sometimes told through the archived writings of participants, these true recollections as well as official documents, also bring all that happens into an immediacy rarely felt in an history book.

    The personal intimacy of the Czech story is further enhanced by the interweaving of Jan Wiener's own experiences as the Heydrich story evolves. The courage of his mother, the desperation of his father and his own attempt to leave the country.. His fear echoing the fear that must have been present throughout Prague. And the feeling of isolation, also, both individually and as a nation. And yet, and yet ...

    And all narrated in a style which follows the text of the book, perfectly paced and beautifully read with just a touch of emotion entering into an occasional recollection where such feelings were obviously appropriate. Mark Kamish was a pleasure to hear and, although I cannot comment on his pronunciations, seemed fully capable in tackling the often challenging names of both people and places, thus making them feel familiar.

    World War II is a long time ago now and soon there will be no one remaining who remembers it first hand. Other wars and tragedies take precedence in our minds then. But some stories should live on, ones which give insight into the baseness of what can happen and the simple courage to resist evil at any cost. This is one of those stories and so well told that it touches our humanity. with it's excellent telling. Throw away the dry history books in the classroom and play our children this book instead so they can experience how it was at (almost) first hand

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daman 11-28-16
    Daman 11-28-16 Member Since 2016

    A good listen makes for an amazing day!

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    "Fascinating and Compelling"
    Would you listen to The Assassination of Heydrich again? Why?

    Yes, being a history buff it was a special book into that period of time.


    What about Mark Kamish’s performance did you like?

    It was strong and easy to listen to. I enjoyed it.


    Any additional comments?

    "This review copy audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost."

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hawkeye 11-26-16
    Hawkeye 11-26-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Compelling story - Excellent narration"

    Part deep history lesson of the Czech Republic during WWII and part historical narrative, the actual assassination of Heydrich is foretold in the title and perhaps secondary to the story. The book is voiced from both a German/Nazi perspective and a Czech/British/Resistance point of view. The author does a very thorough job of bringing the listener up to speed on the geography, politics and temperament of Europe in the late 1930's and early 1940's while weaving in Hitler's implementation of the Final Solution. Be forewarned that multiple historically correct examples of Nazi soldiers zealously and fanatically carrying out their orders are described in detail. These depictions are necessary as they paint a desolate landscape for the Czech citizens, the Resistance and exiled Czech government.

    Heydrich was a highly placed Nazi officer and reported directly to Hitler who referred to Heydrich in admiration as the "man with the iron heart". Heydrich chaired the committee that formalized the Final Solution (the deportation and genocide of all Jews and other non-Arians in Europe), organized and implemented Kristallnacht and was officially charged with eliminating resistance to the Nazi party. Both Hitler and Heydrich saw the Czech Republic as an impediment to the Nazi goal of global domination, hence, Heydrich lobbied for and was granted the position of Reich Protector over Bohemia and Moravia (the part of Czech Republic incorporated in 1939. The Resistance was composed of Czech nationals, British and other Allied friendly forces. Upon Heydrich's arrival what was a brutal and difficult occupation became a nightmare almost beyond description. So, In an act of both justice and desperation the Resistance decides to assassinate Heydrich. The Nazi retaliation is beyond anyone’s reckoning!

    Many supporting characters are fleshed out in this story and the narrative moves at a reasonable pace. Wiener quotes his sources for much of the story and the listener doesn't have to guess as to what is fact and what is dramatization. This audio book is brutally frank and historically necessary. Weiner wrote a great piece; the audio equivalent of a page turner. The narration by Mark Kamish was exceptional. There is so much thought and preparation that goes into vocal characterization and Kamish was hitting on all cylinders in this offering.

    I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cathy 11-21-16
    Cathy 11-21-16
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    "A compelling story of bravery during WWII"
    Would you listen to The Assassination of Heydrich again? Why?

    Yes. This book admits the reader into the fascinating world of the Czech resistance. The author describes two parallel paths - his personal story of capture and imprisonment, and the larger story of the resistance movement within Czechoslovakia. These stories of heroism and defiance are compelling and draw the reader in to the drama of that era.


    What other book might you compare The Assassination of Heydrich to and why?

    Any aficionado of WWII stories will enjoy this book.


    Have you listened to any of Mark Kamish’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have listened to several of Mr. Kamish's audiobooks, and found this one the most satisfying. His voice is well-suited for this book, and his incorporation of the German and Czech names and phrases throughout was excellent. He brought emotion and compassion to the characters, and it was a pleasure to listen to his performance.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I was so intrigued by the characters' stories I did not want to put the book down.


    Any additional comments?

    I was voluntarily provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deal Seeker of New YOrker 11-15-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Plays like an excellent history channel special..."

    I really enjoyed the narrative in this telling of the Heydrich assassination story. WWII lore is so deep that its easy to over look this story. It played like a docudrama with cuts from different characters' perspectives as well as the omnipotent narrator when context was necessary. This element gave me the suspense of fiction with large chunks of educational background. I would recommend this in one or two long sittings as opposed to 10-15 min a day.
    The narration was smooth with forgivable accents (better than most I've heard on audible).

    I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Richards 11-08-16 Member Since 2016

    History buff and Heraldic Artist...

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    "Superb and Well Detailed From the Inside"
    Any additional comments?

    Story: This book is a detailed account of the assassination from the viewpoint of a Czech national. Although I knew quite a bit about the Heydrich killing, this is a very personal view of what the mood and the people were like inside the Czech Republic. I feel very fortunate that Jan wrote this book and shared a very difficult part of his life. It went quickly and I wish there were a little bit more. Absolutely worth the time.

    Performance: At first I thought the narrator was stilted and then I realized his first language might be Czech and it settled down nicely. His pronunciations of all of the Czech villages and peoples names were spot on and I warmed to his narration and started connecting him with the author Jan.

    This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kingsley Henely Brook, Australia 11-07-16
    Kingsley Henely Brook, Australia 11-07-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Part History Part Autobiography"

    The Assassination of Heydrich is a bit of a strange book as it isn't exactly a straight history book, but is also somewhat an autobiography of the author Jan Wiener. The autobiography somewhat forms a frame around the story of Heydrich. Wiener escaped Czechoslovakia and eventually (via some prison camps in Italy) joined the Czech resistance as a part of the RAF.

    Along with covering his war-time life Wiener's book covers the Czech resistance, the actions of the Nazis (and Heydrich in particular) in their invasion of Czechoslovakia, the assassination attempt and eventual death of Heydrich and then the Nazi retaliation.

    Well told, powerful and interesting, the book covers a section of WW2 that isn't covered much - the Czech people and their resistance. Must time is given to Russia, France and Poland but Czech seems to be forgotten and ignored (much like it was by the west in 1938).

    A great read for anyone looking for some less well known WW2 stories.

    Narration by Mark Kamish was good. He was well paced and clear. Where the sections allowed it (it is a non-fiction book) he put in emotion to the characters and their words/actions. There was one point where i felt the 'voice acting' was too much: one point during an emotional and sad event that Kamish puts in a large sniffle. I'm not sure if this was intentionally put in to convey the emotions or if Kamish was genuinely upset (he was sounding upset during the section, as one would expect) and the sniffle wasn't take out of the audio when it was supposed to be. Other than that one too much/audio glitch moment, the narration was top notch.

    I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Vickie 11-07-16
    Vickie 11-07-16 Member Since 2014
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    "An excellent novel about a horrific period in time"

    This was over all a wonderful book. I actually read it in one setting, but I will definitely go back and read it again. It is that kind of book. I know a lot about world war two, but I am always excited and anxious to learn even more. This book opened my eyes to a completely different part of history than I have ever known before. I am so glad that I read it. The near ration was great and very easy to follow I enjoyed the different accents that he used with each character.
    I was voluntarily provided this preview audio copy by the author narrator or publisher

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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