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"Write out of love, write out of instinct, write out of reason. But always for money."
Louis Untermeyer

We Die Alone

By David Howarth
The Lyons Press, 231 pp, 1999

Originally published in 1955, We Die Alone chronicles the dramatic story of Jan Baalstrud, a lone survivor from a team of Norwegian commandos who sailed from northern England to Nazi-occupied Norway to organize, supply and train the Norwegian resistance. Locals betrayed the small team, however, and only Baalstrud escaped the Nazi surprise attack.

Left all alone, with only a pistol and no food, water, or adequate protection from the frigid Arctic countryside, Baalstrud struck out for a desperate trek to the relative safety of the Swedish border. Pursued by Nazis, frostbitten and snow-blind, buried by an avalanche, and eventually crippled, Baalstrud finally makes it to safety, but only with the help of brave Norwegian freedom fighters, frustrated and impotent under the heavy yoke of the Nazis.

The author, David Howarth, ran a spy ring during World War II, from which he derived this book and another. He died in 1991.

We Die Alone is a stirring portrait of one manís determined will to live, and the common thread of humanity that unites us all.

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