From the mouths of those who led and participated in the Jewish resistance groups in Nazi-occupied Poland, comes the true story of Isaac's Army, so named after the leader of the main Jewish fighting force. This is a detailed account of how these fighters found each other and how they together in the end gave the Nazis all they could handle.
Author Matthew Brzezinski does a couple smart things here. First, he managed to interview the key players before they died. The result is a very personal account, not only a historical one. This adds a more in-depth layer to the story.
He also does something most other writers on this subject didn't; he continues the story to the conclusion. Most historians/writers cover the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and let the story end there when the revolt was crushed. But Brzezinski follows the fighters after the Ghetto Uprising and how they participated in the Polish Uprising the following year. That tale, I have to say, was in some ways more harrowing. How these people - and any Poles - survived ... well, if you weren't hearing it from them, you would have a hard time believing it. That part of the story has gotten scant coverage.
While everyone has always focused on the Z.O.B. (the most famous of the two main Jewish Resistance groups), I felt Brzezinski gave equal time and the best in-depth details of the other group, Z.Z.W., of anyone I have read so far. Truth is the Z.Z.W. was better equipped and put up a heck of a fight but fewer survivors and lack of written accounts mean less is known about them.
The only thing I didn't like about this book, and an aspect I repeatedly found aggravating, was that the author changed the Warsaw Street names to their English meanings. He did this to try and make it easier for his English-speaking readers. I wish he hadn't. I know the Warsaw Street names, I was constantly going, so which street is that again?. I finally gave up trying to keep track of the geography.
This was really my only gripe about the book. Other than that, it was an easy, fascinating, page-turner of a book. I hope to read some of his other work. Street name issue or not, I give this a 5 of 5 on the rating scale and say it is the book to get if you want a general overview of those events.