East West Street

East West Street

Paperback Published on: 31/03/2017
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Bookseller Reviews

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East West Street
Superb book
This is an extraordinary book that I found impossible to put down. It read like a novel with each section giving you more of the story. East West Street... READ MORE
Bernadette Murchan at Newry
East West Street
The best book i read in 2016
East West Street is an incredibly moving and important book. Sands traces the tragic secret history of his own family in such a compelling manner that it r... READ MORE
Ian at Edinburgh West End
East West Street
East West Street left me so speechless I've been writing this review for a week. As a law graduate I know there is a tendency to conceive of books on the ... READ MORE
Emily at Lancaster King Street
East West Street
The most thrilling non-fiction book I have ever read
It is tempting to tip into the overuse of superlatives when reviewing books. Yet once in while, one reads something that is truly superior, in its own genr... READ MORE


Waterstones Non-fiction Book of the Month for April (2017) Winner of the Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction 2016 I encountered a city of mythologies, a place of deep intellectual traditions where cultures and religions and languages clashed among the groups that lived together in the great mansion that was the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The First World War collapsed the mansion, destroying an empire and unleashing forces that caused scores to be settled and much blood to be spilled. In what Daniel Finkelstein in The Times described as ‘a work of great brilliance… everything that happens is inevitable and yet comes as a surprise… in places I gasped, in places I wept,’ East West Street is both a history of atrocity and a relentless, brilliantly-pitched search for the truth. By seeking out the decimated past of his own family, Sands unearths the then-controversial origins of international human rights itself. An invitation to deliver a lecture in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv sets international human rights lawyer Philippe Sands on a profound quest that will both unearth the origins of international law and fill the terrible gaps in his own family’s decimated history. In the process, he both wrestles with the outcome of the laws created at the time and delineates the death machine built to destroy an entire people. Sands exhumes layer after layer of hidden detail, revealing the extraordinary story of two Nuremberg prosecutors who ultimately realise the man they are prosecuting may have been responsible for the murder of their entire families in Nazi-occupied Poland, in and around Lviv. These two remarkable men - Hersch Lauterpacht and Rafael Lemkin – sit at the heart of Sands’ exploration, whilst their quarry , Hitler’s personal lawyer Hans Frank, proves himself an equally compelling character. It is through Lauterpacht and Lemkin that the words 'crimes against humanity' and 'genocide' – at the time controversial notions – became part of both the judgement at Nuremberg and our lexicon of hate. The deeper Sands digs, he finally traces the grim events that overcame his own family during the Second World War. A Professor of law at University College London, Philippe Sands QC has written widely on the subject of international law as well as participating in major legal cases with global implications, including taking part in the 1992 Climate Change Convention and legal cases concerning the Belmarsh and Guantánamo detainees.

  • Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
  • ISBN: 9781474601917
  • Number of pages: 496
  • Weight: 360g
  • Dimensions: 196 x 128 x 30 mm

Customer Reviews

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East West Street
Brilliant. The most unputdownable non-fiction book I have ever read.
Whilst, for obvious reasons given the subject matter, this book is not the easiest to read in places, and takes a bit of effort to get into, it is well wo... READ MORE
Joani Miller
East West Street
This is an unusual book as it takes in World War 2, family history and how 2 lawyers endeavored to change the language of Law. The events around the Author... READ MORE
Adam Burt
East West Street
One of the best books I have ever read
I hardly know what to say about this book. It is a work of non-fiction but it reads like a tense thriller. The investigative detail is stunning. It was six... READ MORE
Debbie Lawley
East West Street
Fascinating book
Don't be put off by the subject matter, this is a really interesting and well written book intertwining a family story with the stories of other people who... READ MORE
Tracey Enderby
East West Street
wonderful history lesson
I am not a history buff but heard Philippe Sands speak and interview others at Hay on Wye. I found him so interesting and easy to follow that I ended up bu... READ MORE
Maire Self
East West Street
History with a real story
I loved this book and have recommended to everyone I know who likes reading and is interested in the world around them. This was a unique approach... layer... READ MORE
Pilar Murphy
East West Street
Good on Nuremberg trials - but otherwise don't believe the hype!
I found this book overall quite hard-going to complete. I do understand the surprising connections that the author had to personalities involved in the Nur... READ MORE
Mark Datson
East West Street
A real life detective case
Philippe Sands is a respected lawyer in the U.K. of Jewish origin. This book deals with him tracing family connections following World War II and the Holoc... READ MORE
East West Street
First Class
This book was amazing. The research and detail are incredible. At times it is hard going because of the subject matter but the author always engages and ... READ MORE
East West Street
An astonishing tale
This is a must read. It takes you on a journey across old Europe from Habsburg to Soviet empires and into the darkest heart of the Nazi empire. It’s part b... READ MORE