Regular price: £24.19

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – choose any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • Free, unlimited access to Audio Shows
  • After your trial, Audible is just £7.99/month
OR
In Basket

Summary

In 1943 Polish underground fighter John Wiernicki is captured and beaten by the Gestapo, then shipped to Auschwitz. In this chilling memoir, Wiernicki, a Gentile, details life in the infamous death camp, and his battle to survive, physically and morally, in the face of utter evil. The author begins by remembering his aristocratic youth, an idyllic time shattered by German invasion. The ensuing dark days of occupation would fire the adolescent Wiernicki with a burning desire to serve Poland, a cause that led him to valiant action and eventual arrest. As a young non-Jew, Wiernicki was acutely sensitive to the depravity and injustice that engulfed him at Auschwitz. He bears witness to the harrowing selection and extermination of Jews doomed by birth to the gas chambers, to savage camp policies, brutal SS doctors, and rampant corruption with the system. He notes the difference in treatment between Jews and non-Jews. And he relives fearful unexpected encounters with two notorious "Angels of Death": Josef Mengele and Heinz Thilo. War in the Shadow of Auschwitz is an important historical and personal document.

©2001 John Wiernicki (P)2016 Redwood Audiobooks

Critic reviews

"Wiernicki's memoir is a haunting and intimate account of the Holocaust, written with an almost unbearable clarity." ( Booklist)
"In this simple but harrowing memoir, Wiernicki recounts his involvement with the Polish underground and his subsequent imprisonment in Nazi labor and death camps. That the author is a gentile survivor makes his testimony especially significant..." ( Publishers Weekly)

More from the same

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    0
  • 4 Stars
    1
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    0
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    1
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great insight into just how horrific it was...

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in this topic, it is a great insight into what it was like and how it affected not only the Jews

What was one of the most memorable moments of War in the Shadow of Auschwitz?

Just learning about how life was for the prisoners of war. I have not heard such interesting detail before

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

The narration was a little like a newsreader reporting however in some ways this suited the story and allowed for the more gruesome aspects to be communicated effectively. The narrator had a good talent for pronouncing difficult German words.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I was shocking and very sad.

Any additional comments?

This audiobook was provided by the author/narrator/publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • cps
  • 03-02-17

A true account of WWII horrors

Any additional comments?

This book told a horrible story of what life was like for those having to experience torture by the hands of the Nazi's. It was hard to listen to this because I could picture the life - and deaths - of so many deemed not worthy of living. It was a little dry at times but well worth listening to if you're interested in learning the hard truth.

This audiobook was provided by the author/narrator/publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • TinkerMel
  • 21-12-16

Moving

Wow such a gripping moving story. A polish young man is in prison, and gets put in the camps, with the jewish. Man, the things he has seen, and went though. this book will move you. It so hard to hear what we as people put other people though. there is just no compassion! some parts will stick with you. Thankfully this is not a gruesome detailed book but you get the point. and really lets you know what was going on back them.

Thank you for sharing your story with us. May we all learn from this.
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kam Kam
  • 09-03-18

Wow....Just Wow

Loved every minute of it, extremely hard at some points and had me at tears at many. Good Narration as well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Susan Bourgeois
  • 29-03-17

Thought provoking

Fascinating and thought provoking. Many questions left unanswered. The account totally avoids any discussion of authors moral struggles.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • chris miller
  • 22-01-17

Uniquely told, historical, yet personal & moving.

Would you listen to War in the Shadow of Auschwitz again? Why?

Yes, I always enjoy picking up on details I missed the first time around!

What did you like best about this story?

This was my first time hearing one of these personal counts from a resistance point of view, slightly different than other survivor stories, yet ot remains up close and personal.

Have you listened to any of Charles Henderson Norman’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Initially the narrators voice seemed robotic and I almost stopped listening, But I grew to enjoy it. So glad I didn't put it down!

Any additional comments?

This audiobook was recieved via Audiobook Boom, at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Darc
  • 20-01-17

Interesting account of WW2 and Hitler's regime.

The personal account was interesting and informative. It reinforced the existing facts about the holocaust. The narrator tended to repeat himself a little too much.
"I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audio book by the author, narrator, or publisher"

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Daryl
  • 20-01-17

A difficult Book

This book was difficult to read. The subject matter was difficult, of course, but I didn't find the author a very hopeful person, even when he was in the resistance army. Many thoughts are repeated, with clunky phrasing...
The narrator's booming voice was distracting from the story, and his dialogue was incredibly flat and weak, like he was reading the narrative passages with no emotion.
And yet, I couldn't seem to stop listening.
No matter how many WWII books I read, there's always another angle, another life, another story. I had hoped to hear more about the author's post WWII life, how his experiences shaped him and changed him, his successes and setbacks after the war, but the author chose not to give us more than the briefest glimpse into his life as a student in the UK and then as a husband in the USA.
I am unsure if it was worth the time or credit, but it's worth reading if you want a look into a very bleak time in history from the point of view of a soldier.
I received this book at no charge in exchange for an honest review.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Michael Richards
  • 13-01-17

A Polish View From Outside and Inside Auschwitz

Any additional comments?

Story: A very engaging and complete story from the author's day to day existence before the invasion on a large estate in Poland, to resistance and home army activities and finally incarceration and liberation from one of the most notorious concentration camps in history.

Performance: The narration was professional and clear. His voice was a bit booming for my taste (I prefer calm BBC documentary types) but did not distract in any way.

Overall: No matter how many accounts I read of people involved in some way in WWII, I am always amazed by the variety of experience and the amazing courage and determination that human beings have to overcome and survive experiences I can't even imagine. This book gave me a Polish perspective of one man's journey through WWII. It is very personal and honest and covers his emotions, romantic interests in the midst of war, troubled thoughts and internal conflicts.

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

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kevin S.
  • 10-01-17

Inspiring Story of Survival

The story of a young man in his mid teens in Poland at the outbreak of WWII. At the risk of a spoiler alert, he spent most of the war a prisoner in/near Auschwitz. The litany of people he encountered most of whom did not survive the war and even the many of captors who were later tried and executed for their crimes was heartrending. I found myself trying to decide how I might have responded at that age and expecting that I would most likely not have survived. Sure, perhaps a bit dry in parts, but gosh dangit, that is what the reality was!

The narrator did an excellent job carrying the what I will call stoic pathos of the author through his journey and quest to survive. Obviously he had a good handle on the Polish and German vocabulary integral to such a story.

Powerful but certainly not light reading/listening.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Daman
  • 10-01-17

Moving and Gripping

Any additional comments?

I felt the pain and need for human dignity in this world after reading this book. The narrator and author captured the integral message well.

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