Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite
Endgame, 1945 by David Stafford is a well-researched account of the last month of World War II. Stafford concentrates on nine individuals: soldiers, war correspondents, POWs, men, and women. The text begins with Hitler’s birthday, April 20, 1945.
Endgame, 1945 captured my attention from the first page. The events came to life as I read of the atrocious events. David Stafford tells the story through the lives of nine individuals: Soldiers, such as: Robert Ellis from Wooster, Ohio and Lieutenant Bryan Samian, a young British Commando, and prisoners. Twenty-six year old Fey von Hassel was an ambassador’s daughter imprisoned by the Germans for her father’s sentiments. Then, there were the war correspondents, like Robert Reid.
This was not a pleasant read. Stafford’s descriptions are so vivid I could see them taking place in my mind’s eye. In one chapter, he tells of a woman, hair covered in lice, protruding ribs, so weak that she could not lift herself off the floor as diarrhea bubbled up across her thighs. Stafford describes the Concentration Camps. He includes photographs. Among the photos are Reg Roy, Robert Ellis, Bryan Samain, Fey von Hassel, and Robert Reid. While this book is not for the faint of heart, it tells of an event that should never be forgotten.