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Archive for the ‘Book Reviews’ Category

nevis-book-anton-tomazic.jpgTitle: Second Place of Birth: Nevis
Author: Anton Tomažič
Language: English and Slovene (in separate books)

Available at: Amazon or AuthorHouse
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This is a fantastic story, not only one of courage and overcoming but also because it is writen by a Slovene living here but about a place so not like here.

It this book is many things ; adventure, history, love, politics, family and a true Slovenian spirit is what I love most about this book. This really could have been many books in that someone suddenly finds himself in an impossible situation but it is very cleverly woven in all these other things that the author has learned in his vast and full life that makes the book stand out from any other adventure/overcoming book I’ve read.

Being that it happened to a Slovene national is what first brought me to read this book as I wanted to see what a Slovene’s perspective would be on this kind of place and event that unfolded as I’m currently visiting here and covering the people, places and history of this area.

Although the English version I read seemed a bit translated and hard to read on that account the content was of the most interesting nature both from an adventure aspect (surviving on pure grit and resourcefulness for 8 days alone in the jungles of a Caribbean island) and from the aspect of human soul-searching and reflecting on life and faith.

I also greatly enjoyed the personal connection he had to events that unfolded after the Second World War, particularly the massacre of Kocevski Rog that I want to study more about and visit the location like I did at lake Krn, Žiri, and Cerje, if I get the chance on this visit.

His unique “insiders track” of the historical events and reestablishment of the independent Slovene nation and the important part Mr. Tomažič personally played in those formidable years of the nation in the early 90’s was also astounding to read.

There is really no denying that this authors’s life has a real propose and this book tells of the chapters of his life so far and stand to prove that life spent for God, family and countrymen is the greatest life one can have.

I hope one day that Mr. Tomažič writes a memoir of his whole life and all he was able to do with this second lease on life and ‘second birth’. It certainly has brought a lot of answers and insight for me into Slovene life and history, and much more relatable thanks to this incredible book.

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ring-of-wire-aj-potocnik.jpgTitle: Utrjena Ljubljana / The Ring Of Wire

Author: Aleksander Jankovič Potočnik

Language: English and Slovene (two column format, dual language in one book)

Publishers / Distributors

This is a great book detailing the not so well known events during the time of 1942-1945 when the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana was surrounded with a literal ring of barbed wire, military outpost, city sectors and concentration camps.

they were first built and manned by the Italians then later occupied by the Germans leading up to the Second World War. Interesting but unfortunate many of the same tactics were used by the Nazis in many other cities as well around Europe though this might arguably have been the first, but least known instance in history books documenting World War II.

This author is setting out to change that historical knowledge-gap by finally putting down on paper, and complete with over 80 maps, photographs, and illustrations of that time for this incredibly significant account. He addresses it from both a historical and architectural standpoint (of the bunkers) while still providing a riveting and human account of this difficult time in history for the city and its inhabitants.

It is a small, brisk read, kind of like a collage paper of the subject, but especially well done. It is clear from the book and from having the honor of meeting and accompanying the author on several historical events during my visit to Slovenia that he is extremely knowledgeable and dedicated to the preservation of history and historical periods and that together with AdPirum (the book publishers) they have dedicated their time and resources toward that end. I do not see why he is not more of an accomplished lecturer or have a collage residency as a contemporary history professor; it is certainly not for lack of knowledge of these times, perhaps one day when his busy schedule permits for it.

This book is a must-read for anyone interested in history, wither you happen to visit Ljubljana or do the POT trail or not, it is history and an important puzzle piece in understanding the events that eventually lead to the hasty forming of a united Yugoslavia. Unfortunately it has made this event rather politically colored, but it is still an invaluable history lesson none the less.

A movie really ought to be made of this event telling the human story like the films Hart’s War, I am David, or the new Iwo Jima film do that are based on this time and war period. Unfortunately it seems until a big Blockbuster film is made about this area few will really pay much attention to history in this region. For those that are there is now this great book.

Cleverly done in both Slovene and English to fully maximizing the readership in one concise book.

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