CoffeeBook Chick's Reviews > The Katyn Order

The Katyn Order by Douglas W. Jacobson
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's review
Oct 23, 2011

really liked it

It's books like this that make me grateful for, well, books. Invariably there is always something that is new for me, and an event like this is one that we cannot forget. To do so, yet again does a disservice to the victims and their families, families who waited in vain for their loved ones to come home, never knowing that they had been mercilessly slaughtered.

Adam and Natalia were characters I immediately liked, along with a young teenager nicknamed Rabbit, a skillful messenger and a general jack-of-all-trades, who particularly stuck with me. Reading about history can sometimes be a dry experience, but with Jacobson's knowledgeable and masterful storytelling, The Katyn Order instead becomes an absorbing and suspenseful ride through the end of World War II. It's a thoughtful exposé of the truths surrounding this event, while at the same time positioning a fictional story as its primary driver, which keeps the reader excited to continue reading and learning at the same time. It's this device that makes it difficult to put the book down, and The Katyn Order provided me with that same result - once I picked it up, I couldn't stop reading. When I had to put it down, I continued to think about the story, the brutality of war, particularly World War II, and the graphic moments that were included successfully served to provide me with just enough insight into the experiences that Adam and Natalia went through together and separately. The barbaric execution of Polish officers still makes me speechless with the intense sense of mournfulness of the act.

While there were some moments of the love story between Adam and Natalia that had me shaking my head in disbelief, I had to question myself and ask what I would really do if I was falling in love and war raged around me. Because of this, I couldn't say I would or wouldn't act in the same way that the main characters did, and I'd like to think I'd be smart and run my butt off, far and away from certain death, but...maybe not. Maybe I would be completely overwhelmed with the magnitude of all of the emotions that war would force on me. So maybe I would just have a moment with a mysterious man while I was fighting to save my country and fighting for my people against horrible injustices. Now that I think about it, why not?

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