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If This Is a Man / The Truce Audiobook

If This Is a Man / The Truce

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Publisher's Summary

Translated by Stuart Woolf.

'With the moral stamina and intellectual poise of a twentieth-century Titan, this slightly built, dutiful, unassuming chemist set out systematically to remember the German hell on earth, steadfastly to think it through, and then to render it comprehensible in lucid, unpretentious prose. He was profoundly in touch with the minutest workings of the most endearing human events and with the most contemptible. What has survived in Levi's writing isn't just his memory of the unbearable, but also, in The Periodic Table and The Wrench, his delight in what made the world exquisite to him. He was himself a magically endearing man, the most delicately forceful enchanter I've ever known.' (Philip Roth)

©2014 Primo Levi (P)2014 Hachette Audio

What the Critics Say

"The death of Primo Levi robs Italy of one of its finest writers...One of the few survivors of the Holocaust to speak of his experiences with a gentle voice." (The Guardian)

"A life-changing book." (Daily Express

"One of the greatest human testaments of the era." (Philip Roth)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (81 )
5 star
 (62)
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4.7 (72 )
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4.6 (74 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mrs. Lorraine J. Brown 10/02/2015

    When I could see I used to read a bout 1 book ever 3 months if I was lucky, now I can listen to at least 2 books a month, its great,

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A compelling narration"

    The story. Was captivating, a compelling narration of a horrendous time in history, the narration was very good had me in tears

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Liz... Bristol Bristol, United Kingdom 12/10/2015
    Liz... Bristol Bristol, United Kingdom 12/10/2015 Member Since 2012

    This was Liz's Amazon account so it's her name on it. I'm husband Richard in reality. Please forgive the unintended deception. Love variety.

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    Story
    "Levi's humanity shines."

    These books have provided me with an extraordinary taste of a world that no longer exists. I am glad to have had that taste. My life is the better for it. I won't pretend that this is an easy listen. It describes a world that I've never known and I hope to never know outside of listening to Primo Levi's experiences. What rises from those experiences is a strong sense of how, despite the difficulties of existing, humans can both persist and retain a sense of dignity & purpose. Yes, he describes the brutality of the lager, but he does not lose his focus on the responses of both himself and those around him.
    In The Truce, Levi goes on to describe the aftermath of his internment at Birkenau and his journey back to Italy. This is an odyssey of sorts, crossing Europe, and has some humour, as well.
    Henry Goodman does an excellent job of narrating what might have been a banal and unrelieved story of true horror. Instead he finds the nuances to help differentiate in the listener's mind Levi's carefully written prose.
    You do not need to be Jewish, anymore than you need to be a human being, to be interested in this book. It shows how those in power can seek to belittle the lives of those different to themselves. Also how despite the vile strictures of the powerful, those oppressed retain more of their humanity than their oppressors. Listen to this and find your own humanity.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kdl 09/04/2015
    Kdl 09/04/2015 Member Since 2014
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    "Riveting account"

    This is a brilliant heart rending account of what a man had to go through on a daily basic to survive a concentration camp and having done so, the challenges that he faced to get home. We cannot imagine the terrible ordeal that inmates had to endure but this book brings home the struggle where the vast majority did not make it. I have listened to this book three times - it makes me humble and realize that my day to day tribulations are nothing compared to what these heroes went through.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    m 16/07/2016
    m 16/07/2016 Member Since 2015
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    "Profound Experience ..."

    Shocking, detailed and morbidly fascinating account of the day to day horrors of the camps and prisoner experience. The detailed and empirical narrative informs the reader and implores understanding and meditation on what it is that gives us identity, courage and independence. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miss Judith Finlay 21/04/2016 Member Since 2015
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    "Everyone must read this book and know the truth x"

    Everyone must read this book to understand what happened from the perspective of a good and honest man, at times this is very hard to listen to, but a story like this is not meant to be enjoyable, it is meant to let us collectively remember, so we always know this is wrong, and there is joy in knowing you do not have to experience such atrocities x

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Goronwy-Wyn Cardiff, United Kingdom 14/02/2016
    Goronwy-Wyn Cardiff, United Kingdom 14/02/2016 Member Since 2016
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    "Fascinating"

    I knew in broad terms of the events and I'd been to Auschwitz but Primo Levi brought the time the events and the terrible details into sharp focus.
    His level of detail and his ability to paint a mental picture make this a special book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sigrin Valdisere, France 05/01/2016
    Sigrin Valdisere, France 05/01/2016 Member Since 2013
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    "Horrors of war"

    Very humbling journey through this mans life, I wish I had half of this mans strength of character.

    My only criticism is Henry Goodman lacks intonation and feeling in his narration

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wheres My ......... 05/12/2015 Member Since 2015
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    "Humanity"

    Humanity in all its forms Very insightful into the human condition. Buy it a life affirming book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BigRoddy 05/12/2015
    BigRoddy 05/12/2015 Member Since 2012
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    "Great stuff"
    What made the experience of listening to If This Is a Man / The Truce the most enjoyable?

    The story, the narration was excellent also.
    You get two books in one here. One in the camp, then the second the journey from being liberated To his home.
    I thought I would not enjoy the second part as much, but it turned out to be so interesting, especially because of the schemes and tricks they use to survive.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of If This Is a Man / The Truce?

    For me it was when he goes to the markets in Poland to get eggs and tries to impress someone with a trick.


    What does Henry Goodman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Not sure, I think I would have pronounced some of the names wrong.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The whole book is quite moving. It's also funny, so don't assume this book is completely depressing.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracey 18/10/2015
    Tracey 18/10/2015
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    "Powerfully moving"

    The story of one man of many's ordeal. Important that we still keep remembering and learning so that we don't allow hatred of a race to decimate the world again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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