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Invisible Walls: A Journalist in Search of Her Life

Hella Pick

8 Reviews

Rated 0

Autobiography: general

From Kindertransport survivor to pioneering Foreign Correspondent at the Guardian - the extraordinary life of Hella Pick

'Memoirs of such richness are rare . . . a joy' JAMES NAUGHTIE

'A remarkable personal journey, by one of the great political correspondents of our world - eloquent, enlightening, exhilarating' PHILIPPE SANDS

A trailblazer for women in journalism, Hella Pick arrived in Britain in 1939 as a child refugee from Austria. Over nearly four decades she covered the volatile global scene, first in West Africa, followed by America and long periods in Europe. In her thirty-five years with the Guardian she reported on the end of Empire in West Africa, the assassination of President Kennedy, Martin Luther King's march from Selma to Montgomery, the Vietnam peace negotiation in Paris, the 1968 student revolt in France, the birth of the Solidarity movement in Poland, and the closing stages of the Cold War. A request for coffee on board a Soviet ship anchored in Malta led to a chat with Mikhail Gorbachev. A request for an interview with Willy Brandt led to a personal friendship that enabled her to come to terms with Germany's Nazi past.

Her book is also a clarion call for preserving professionalism in journalism at a time when social media muddy the waters between fact and fiction, and between reporting and commentary.

INVISIBLE WALLS tells the dramatic story of how a Kindertransport survivor won the trust and sometimes the friendship of world leaders, and with them a wide range of remarkable men and women. It speaks frankly of personal heartache and of a struggle over her Jewish identity. It is also the intensely touching story of how, despite a gift for friendship and international recognised achievements as a woman journalist, a continuing sense of personal insecurity has confronted her with a series of invisible walls.

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Praise for Invisible Walls: A Journalist in Search of Her Life

  • Memoirs of such richness are rare. Hella Pick's personal and journalistic journey from Nazi Europe to Brexit teems with humanity, diamond insights into the leaders and events of our time, and endless fun. A joy

  • Hella Pick, the doyenne of post-war foreign correspondents, had a ringside seat throughout the Cold War, from her journalist's start in West Africa to her Guardian postings in the UN and USA, to her commanding role in reporting on the collapse of Communism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. This is a moving and fascinating autobiography that captures a world that now feels distant

  • Hella Pick arrived in England in 1939 on one of the last Kindertransport trains from Austria and became one of the luckiest as well as the most skillful journalists of her generation. She always seemed to be in the right place at the right time. These memoirs offer a shrewd, detached and wise insight into some of the great events of the late 20th century

  • Hella Pick's vivid and moving account of her trailblazing life on the inside track of international politics over four dramatic decades is a revelation - and a triumph of her extraordinary spirit

  • Thrilling and moving, Hella Pick's odyssey from child exile to trailblazing woman journalist and confidante of world leaders shines a bright light on two of the greatest challenges of our time: achieving gender equality and the refugee's struggle for identity and belonging

  • An elegant and engaging memoir. Hella Pick escaped the Nazi death-camps to come to Britain and became the doyenne of diplomatic journalists. Hers is an inspirational story

  • Hella Pick is the doyenne, the queen, of diplomatic writers. Her memoirs are beautifully written, and filled with revealing and moving detail. If you want to understand why the world is in the state it is, Hella's story helps to explain it all. At the end, I closed it with real regret

  • An extraordinary life, and Hella Pick's impressive insights are remarkable

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