"A heart-rending story of a father’s heroic legacy to his sons, Gauntlet delivers human drama on an epic scale. Barbara Masin’s gripping account of five boys who dare to challenge a murderous totalitarian dictatorship shows that committed individuals can prevail, even against mind-boggling odds. This is non-fiction that reads like fiction."  -- Iris Chang, author of The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II

"Gauntlet by Barbara Masin is a story of exceptional courage and heroism in the quest for freedom. The author rigorously researched her subject matter, unearthing secret files and forgotten sources in Czech, American and German archives and interviewing numerous eyewitnesses. The result is this thrilling cliffhanger, which confirms on its every page that true life can trump the greatest fiction. Barbara Masin's Gauntlet is one of the best books I have ever read."
-- Lt. Col. Eduard Stehlik, Ph.D., Assistant Director, Military Historical Institute, Czech Republic

"How real was "Rollback"? For five young men from Czechoslovakia, who set off in the fall of 1953 to play their part and reach the West via Communist East Germany, it was real yet tragic. The story of their adventurous escape—which set off a massive manhunt by the Communist German regime in the tense weeks after the failed popular uprising that summer—is told with historical detail, engrossing suspense and with lessons that hold true for today."
-- Dr. Christian F. Ostermann, author of Uprising in East Germany, 1953 and Director of the Woodrow Wilson Center's Cold War International History Project

“An absolutely extraordinary book. Totally unique in its original concept: a thoroughly researched, multi-layered thriller, it combines meticulous historical accuracy with the art of storytelling to a degree that raises the bar in this very popular literary genre. You will learn a tremendous amount about the brutal political ambiance of Eastern European communist states, as well as the astonishing capacity of human endurance tested to its limits. A very, very important book!”
-- Ivan Passer, screenwriter, film director: "Firemen's Ball", "Intimate Lighting", "Cutter's Way", "Stalin"


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