A classic of epic endurance now a major motion picture, The Way Back, starring Ed Harris, Mark Strong and Colin Farrell, directed by Peter Weir.
'I hope The Long Walk will remain as a memorial to all those who live and die for freedom, and for all those who for many reasons could not speak for themselves'
Slavomir Rawicz was a young Polish cavalry officer. On 19 November 1939 he was arrested by the Russians and after brutal interrogation he was sentenced to twenty-five years in a gulag.
After a three-month journey in the dead of winter to Siberia, life in a Soviet labour camp meant enduring hunger, extreme cold, untreated wounds and illnesses and facing the daily risk of arbitrary execution. Realising that to remain meant almost certain death, Rawicz, along with six companions, escaped. In June 1941, they crossed the trans-Siberian railway and headed south, climbing into Tibet and freedom in British India nine months later, in March 1942, having travelled over four thousand miles on foot through some of the harshest regions in the world, including the Gobi Desert, Tibet and the Himalayas.
First published in 1956, this is one of the greatest true stories of escape, adventure and survival against all odds.
In 2010, a film, The Way Back, based on the book, directed by six-time Academy Award-nominee Peter Weir (Master and Commander, The Truman Show, and The Dead Poets Society) was released. It starred Colin Farrell, Jim Sturgess and Ed Harris.
One of the most epic treks of the human race...It must be read - and re-read.
An heroic tale desperately live and compellingly told, Rawicz carries us with each weakening step, sustained by his simple undying vision of the liberty that lies beyond the cruel emptiness of Siberia and the sterile gravles of the Gobi. The Long Walk is an odyssey through the wastelands of Asia and the vastness of the soul - a classic of triumph over despair, of beauty found in the Void. - Benedict Allen
Positively Homeric. - Cyril Connolly, The Times