In 1944, when Communism devastated Eastern Europe, it uprooted millions, setting the new "Displaced Persons" adrift, most often to a tragic fate. By unusual luck, young Stephane Groueff, a Bulgarian, landed on more hospitable shores. Spared from the destruction of his family and home after a happy, privileged childhood in a small Balkan kingdom, his eventful Odyssey threw him into the fascinating life of a "Paris-Match" foreign correspondent, led him to romantic experiences lived against the backdrop of Montmartre nightclubs, Egyptian pyramids, opulent Irish castles or Alpine ski resorts and involved him in anti-Communist exile activities. The reader of his candid narrative finds the budding historian of the Manhattan Project at the side of general Groves, the maker of the atomic bomb, follows him as a chronicler of science research at oceanography expeditions in the Pacific, at the Mt. Palomar telescope or on the South Pole, and meets him again in Mexico and at the service of the Sultan of Oman. His reportages bring him to Cape Canaveral and Saigon, to refugee camps in Thailand, and glamorous Hollywood. The bittersweet tale abounds with celebrities, famous friends, and amusing anecdotes, but is also filled with incurable nostalgia and heartbreaking details of the author's family's sufferings. Unexpectedly, a miracle interrupts the "Displaced Person's" voyage: the Communist regime collapses and Groueff can finally return to his native land. The circle is completed. The red carpet awaits him, but 46 years had passed and most people he loved are no longer there to welcome him.
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Published February 12, 2003
Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Humor & Entertainment.