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Philippe Sands, award-winning author of the bestselling East West Street, discusses his remarkable new book in conversation with Elif Shafak.
The Ratline is the story of Otto von Wächter who, as the Nazi Governor of Galicia, presided over a territory in which hundreds of thousands of Jews and Poles were killed. Indicted for ‘mass murder’ at the end of the war and hunted by multiple international agencies, Wächter went into hiding, first in the Austrian Alps and then in Rome, where a Vatican bishop gave him refuge. But, just before he could take ‘the ratline’ to Argentina, he unexpectedly died.
A unique and fascinating insight into the life of a Nazi fugitive and the network of spies in early Cold War Rome, The Ratline is also a meticulously researched investigation, which unlocks the mysteries surrounding Wächter’s extraordinary life and death.
Presented by Jewish Book Week in partnership with Kings Place and The London Library.
Philippe Sands is Professor of Law at University College London and a practising barrister at Matrix Chambers, frequently appearing before international courts, including the International Criminal Court and the World Court in The Hague. He is the author of three books, including the Sunday Times bestselling East West Street, winner of the 2016 Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction.
Elif Shafak is an award-winning British-Turkish novelist and the most widely read female author in Turkey. Her latest novel 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in this Strange World was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and chosen as Blackwell’s Book of the Year. Her previous novel, The Forty Rules of Love, was chosen by the BBC as among 100 Novels that Shaped Our World.
Jewish Book Week is an annual international literary festival, held at Kings Place and JW3, which brings together writers and speakers from the worlds of history, journalism, philosophy, science, art, music, poetry and fiction in a celebration of ideas.