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‘Trust me, this is a great true story’ – Ken Follett

‘It deserves to be ranked among the great survival stories of the Second World War’ – The Jewish Chronicle


The captivating true story of one boy’s flight across Europe to escape the Nazis. A tale of extraordinary courage, incredible adventure, and the relentless pursuit of life in the face of impossible challenges.

In early 1940 Chaim Herszman was locked in to the Lódz Ghetto in Poland. Hungry, fearless and determined, he goes on scavenging missions outside the wire limits, until he is forced to kill a Nazi guard. That moment changes the course of his life, and sets him on an unbelievable adventure across enemy lines.

Chaim avoids grenade and rifle fire on the Russian border, shelters with a German family in Berlin, falls in love in occupied France, is captured on a mountain pass in Spain, gets interrogated as a potential Nazi spy in Britain, and eventually fights for everything he believes in as part of the British Army. He protects his life by posing as an Aryan boy with a crucifix around his neck, and fights for his life through terrible and astonishing circumstances.

Escape from the Ghetto is about a normal boy who faced extermination by the Nazis in the ghetto or a Nazi deathcamp, and the extraordinary life he led in avoiding that fate. It’s a bittersweet story about epic hope, beauty amidst horror, and the triumph of the human spirit.

John Carr is Henry Carr’s eldest son, and in Escape From the Ghetto he has recreated his father’s incredible adventure, through recordings and transcribed conversations in later life.

For fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Saboteur of Auschwitz and The Volunteer, this is the incredible true story of escape from the Nazis during World War II.


‘John Carr deserves our gratitude for rescuing this World War Two story, among the most dramatic and vivid I’ve read.’
– Edward Stourton, author of Cruel Crossing

‘This is an unbelievable story that is all completely true. The life described is astonishing. John Carr has done an extraordinary and riveting job uncovering the real father behind the dad he thought he knew.’
– Lord Tony Hall

‘Utterly Compelling. It is an extraordinary tale, brilliantly written’ – Alastair Stewart

‘Extraordinary.’– Fiona MacTaggart

‘The remarkable story of a Jewish boy who killed a Nazi guard and escaped the Holocaust aged 13’ – The Times

‘Unputdownable. A gripping, life affirming story of survival against seemingly impossible odds.’Deborah Cadbury, author of Princes at War

‘This is a book you cannot put down… Passionate and spellbinding, and an absolute must read.’ – Julia Neuberger

“John Carr’s book gives a truly riveting account of his teenage Dad’s life on the run in Nazi-occupied Europe. It serves as a reminder of the cruel and arbitrary realities of the refugee experience. It won’t be on Priti Patel’s reading list but it should be on yours.” – Jon Bloomfield

“An eloquent tribute to courage and resourcefulness, Escape from the Ghetto, is a gripping page turner.” – Esther Safran Foer

“One of the most extraordinary books I have ever read”
– Michael Dobbs, author of House of Cards