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The Ice Road: An Epic Journey from the Stalinist Labor Camps to Freedom
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The Ice Road: An Epic Journey from the Stalinist Labor Camps to Freedom

4.3  ·  Rating details ·  53 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
In a forgotten chapter of history, 1.5 million Polish civilians-arbitrarily arrested by Stalin as enemies of the people following the Soviet invasion of Poland in September 1939-were deported to slave labor camps throughout the most inhospitable forests and steppes of the Soviet Union. The Ice Road is the gripping story of young Stefan Waydenfeld and his family, deported b ...more
Hardcover, 406 pages
Published March 16th 2010 by Aquila Polonica (first published August 22nd 2002)
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Jul 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
The Ice Road is a tour de force that takes the reader into a history that is not well known in the U.S. It is the first person account of Stefan Waydenfeld, a Pole, whose family (the Wajdenfelds) is deported to the Soviet Union, simply because they were Poles, educated and hence in need of Soviet re-education. It takes place from the first days of the Nazi invasion of Poland, through the family's deportation to the steppes of Soviet central Asia, through their final journey to join with thousand ...more
Nov 04, 2010 rated it liked it
Good fortune -- luck -- manifests itself in a variety of ways. Frequently, just how lucky we are comes only with hindsight and even then we may not realize just what contributed to a serendipitous result. Yet the extent of a person's fortune may well be a matter of perspective, much like the adage about regretting having no shoes until seeing the person with no feet.

Normally, a person wouldn't think a memoir about being forced into frozen labor camps during World War II is the type of work that
Feb 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you, like me, are a lifelong citizen of USA, reading this book will transport you to another world. As a high school history teacher, I can recite all the battles and strategies of WWII; I can tell you many stories of the Holocaust and Nazi atrocities throughout Europe, but I had ZERO knowledge of what happened to people like this author, who were caught in Poland in the overlapping wedge of Nazi and Russian domination at the outset of this war. I had little knowledge of life in Siberia or ho ...more
Dec 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
An Epic Journey from the Stalinist Labor Camps to Freedom

Sticking with the apparent theme of Stalinist Russia and its aftermath, I found this memoir fascinating. It’s always more interesting to read a historical event in the voice of someone who experienced it, and the author Stefan Waydenfeld describes his experiences with detail and yet without bitterness.

Waydenfeld was the son of a doctor and a biologist, and their small town life south of Warsaw was pleasant and fulfilling. He expected to li
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a fascinating autobiography by a man whose family was shipped by the Soviets from their home in Poland to a Stalinist labor camp in the forests of Siberia during the beginning days of WW II. After many more moves occasioned by the Soviets, he eventually made it to England, where he became a doctor and raised his family. The book is an account of the terrible treatment of the Polish people by the Soviets, of their betrayal by the Western powers, and ultimately of being one of the fortunat ...more
Nov 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Soviet history buffs
At the risk of being redundant, another excellent addition to the genre, recommended heartily for those who tend to be interested in it. A bit different from others I've read in that it chronicles the experiences of a family rather than an individual. As well, an important work in exposing the despicable treatment at that time of the Poles by the Russians.
May 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Excellent book, I highly recommend it.

I read this for my World War II history class. It's about a part of Soviet/Polish history that I new nothing about before: the deportation of Polish citizens to Siberian labor camps in early WWII.

Waydenfeld writes really well and keeps the reader interested.
Sep 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is a sleeper book that gives a vivid personal account of the Waydenfeld family's courageous survival through a Stalinst labor camp in Siberia to their eventual freedom from a divided Poland. Keep an old Atlas handy to follow their path.
Jun 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very informative account of the perilous journey that many civilians of Poland had to embark on during and after WWll. The story educates the reader of the hardships that were endured, from the unique viewpoint of a young teenager.
Susan Schreiber
Jan 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
The story of a 15 year old boy who lives in Poland when WWII starts. It tells his journey in communist Russia. Very interesting as you rarely hear about this aspect of WWII. It is always about the Nazis.
Monika Walentyna
Feb 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful and dramatic story of men's capability to survive the hell.Strongly recommended
Jun 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
amazing nonfiction account of life in Siberian penal colony and escape
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Dr. Stefan Waydenfeld was born 1925 in a suburb of Warsaw, Poland, to a successful and well-educated professional family. Waydenfeld’s father was a medical doctor who specialized in the treatment of tuberculosis in children and young adults, and his mother was a bacteriologist specializing in clinical pathology.

Waydenfeld was 14 years old when World War II began with the Nazi German invasion of Po
More about Stefan Waydenfeld...

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