Iron Curtain by Anne Applebaum
The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1944-1956

87%

9 Critic Reviews

A dark but hopeful chronicle that shows how even humanity’s worst can fracture and fall.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

In the long-awaited follow-up to her Pulitzer Prize-winning Gulag, acclaimed journalist Anne Applebaum delivers a groundbreaking history of how Communism took over Eastern Europe after World War II and transformed in frightening fashion the individuals who came under its sway.

At the end of World War II, the Soviet Union to its surprise and delight found itself in control of a huge swath of territory in Eastern Europe. Stalin and his secret police set out to convert a dozen radically different countries to Communism, a completely new political and moral system. In Iron Curtain, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Anne Applebaum describes how the Communist regimes of Eastern Europe were created and what daily life was like once they were complete. She draws on newly opened East European archives, interviews, and personal accounts translated for the first time to portray in devastating detail the dilemmas faced by millions of individuals trying to adjust to a way of life that challenged their every belief and took away everything they had accumulated. Today the Soviet Bloc is a lost civilization, one whose cruelty, paranoia, bizarre morality, and strange aesthetics Applebaum captures in the electrifying pages of Iron Curtain.
 

About Anne Applebaum

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ANNE APPLEBAUM is a columnist for The Washington Post and Slate. Her previous book, Gulag, won the Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction and was a finalist for three other major prizes. Her essays appear in The New York Review of Books, Slate, and The London Spectator. She lives in Washington, D.C., and Poland with her husband, Radek Sikorski, a Polish politician, and their two children.
 
Published October 30, 2012 by Anchor. 634 pages
Genres: History, Travel, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Nov 25 2012
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Critic reviews for Iron Curtain
All: 9 | Positive: 9 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Good
on Sep 10 2012

A dark but hopeful chronicle that shows how even humanity’s worst can fracture and fall.

Read Full Review of Iron Curtain: The Crushing of... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by MAX FRANKEL on Nov 21 2012

...what she has given us is a concrete and sad record that honors the memory of the millions who were slaughtered, tortured and suppressed in the mad pursuit of totality.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Anatol Lieven on Oct 26 2012

Her book is a masterly synthesis in English of recent research by scholars in these countries, and of the range of memoirs by participants and survivors.

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Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by Daniel Burton on Dec 28 2013

Applebaum’s book holds. Not only is it an fascinating, if dark, period of history, but it is a saga we would be wise to learn from and retain.

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WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by Jennifer Siegel on Nov 09 2012

In this epic but intimate history, Ms. Applebaum offers us windows into the lives of the men and sometimes women who constructed the police states of Eastern Europe.

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The Telegraph

Excellent
Reviewed by Keith Lowe on Nov 05 2012

...Applebaum’s ability to take a dense and complex subject, replete with communist acronyms and...make it not only informative but enjoyable – and even occasionally witty. In that respect alone, it is a true masterpiece.

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The Telegraph

Excellent
Reviewed by Ben Wison on Oct 30 2012

Applebaum writes movingly and with insight into the “tiny compromises” made by ordinary people, not to say the terrors they faced.

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Christian Science Monitor

Excellent
Reviewed by Jordan Michael Smith on Nov 20 2012

Applebaum has written a masterful work that will be read profitably by both laymen and scholars.

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Review (Barnes & Noble)

Good
Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell on Nov 09 2012

Iron Curtain is a valuable reminder that the menace of Stalinism knew no borders.

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Reader Rating for Iron Curtain
79%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 352 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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