The Pianist

by Wladyslaw Szpilman | Biographies & Memoirs | This book has not been rated.
ISBN: 0753814056 Global Overview for this book
Registered by -Xerxes- on 12/17/2023
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Journal Entry 1 by -Xerxes- on Sunday, December 17, 2023
The memoir that inspired Roman Polanski's Oscar-winning film, which won the Cannes Film Festival's most prestigious prize―the Palme d'Or.

Named one of the Best Books of 1999 by the Los Angeles Times

On September 23, 1939, Wladyslaw Szpilman played Chopin's Nocturne in C-sharp minor live on the radio as shells exploded outside―so loudly that he couldn't hear his piano. It was the last live music broadcast from Warsaw: That day, a German bomb hit the station, and Polish Radio went off the air.

Though he lost his entire family, Szpilman survived in hiding. In the end, his life was saved by a German officer who heard him play the same Chopin Nocturne on a piano found among the rubble. Written immediately after the war and suppressed for decades, The Pianist is a stunning testament to human endurance and the redemptive power of fellow feeling.

Journal Entry 2 by -Xerxes- at 1 Darling Island in Pyrmont, New South Wales Australia on Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Released 3 mos ago (2/11/2024 UTC) at 1 Darling Island in Pyrmont, New South Wales Australia


This book is a classic, I first read it many years ago. When one reads these books about survival it makes you realise how heavy handed life can be, sweeping all before it. It is tempting to want to believe that individual qualities matter in these situations but ultimately it is largely a question of luck and statistics. A few people will survive, and their stories will necessarily be unusual and unlikely. So it was for Wladyslaw Szpilman, who survived against the odds and was a pianist as the element of interest.

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