The Book Smugglers: Partisans, Poets, and the Race to Save Jewish Treasures from the Nazis by David Fishman
Masterful prose. What a pleasure it is to have a good read, a first-rate history, and a new perspective on Jewish cultural resistance all wrapped up in one fascinating book. -- Jewish Book World
The Book Smugglers is the nearly unbelievable story of ghetto residents who rescued thousands of rare books and manuscripts―first from the Nazis and then from the Soviets―by hiding them on their bodies, burying them in bunkers, and smuggling them across borders. It is a tale of heroism and resistance, of friendship and romance, and the unwavering devotion of activists willing to risk their lives for literature and art.
Author David Fishman, a writer of exceptional daring, authority, style, and reach, chronicles the daring activities of a group of poets turned partisans and scholars turned smugglers in Vilna, the "Jerusalem of Lithuania." Based on Jewish, German, and Soviet documents, including diaries, letters, memoirs, and interviews the author conducted with several of the story’s participants.
Brandeis University Press, 2018