The Long Walk: The True Story of a Trek to Freedom

Version: Abridged
Author: Slavomir Rawicz
Narrator: John Lee
Genres: Military
Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks
Published In: November 2006
# of Units: 8 CDs
Length: 9 hours, 30 minutes
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Twenty-six-year-old cavalry officer Slavomir Rawicz was captured by the Red Army in 1939 during the German-Soviet partition of Poland and sent to the Siberian Gulag. In the spring of 1941, he escaped with six of his fellow prisoners, including one American. Thus began their astonishing trek to freedom.

With no map or compass but only an ax head, a homemade knife, and a week's supply of food, the compatriots spent a year making their way on foot to British India, through four thousand miles of the most forbidding terrain on earth. They braved the Himalayas, the desolate Siberian tundra, icy rivers, and the great Gobi Desert, always a hair's breadth from death. Finally arriving, Rawicz reenlisted in the Polish army to fight the Germans.

Reviews (3)

Skeptical, too

Written by Albert from Annapolis, MD on March 28th, 2014

  • Book Rating: 4/5

This is an interesting story. For me, some parts lack credibility. One is to cross the Gobi without any container of water. The sighting of a pair of abominable snowpersons is also over the edge for me. Still, I enjoyed listening. I'd like to know how others feel as to the fact/fiction issue.

Hard to believe

Written by Anonymous from Encinitas, CA on June 8th, 2009

  • Book Rating: 3/5

There appears to be a lot of skepticism about the facts in this book. If the story was invented or imbellished, as I suspect, then the author could have made it more exciting. As far as true life adventures, where individuals must overcome overwhelming odds against survival, other books such as Caroline Alexander's "The Endurance"; Nathaniel Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea"; Jon Krakauer's "Into This Air"; Richard Zack's "The Pirate Coast"; or even Nando Parrado's "Miracle in the Andes" are more stirring (and truer) tales.

Made my feet hurt

Written by Anonymous on February 21st, 2009

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Walking across continents, including Siberia and the Gobi Desert. Unbelieveable. This is a great story, and gives good insight into the human spirit.

Author Details

Author Details

Rawicz, Slavomir

Slavomir Rawicz lived in England for many years after the war. He married an Englishwoman and lived in the countryside until his death in 2004.