Timothy W. Ryback

Hitler's First Victims
  • Hitler's First Victims

  • At 9am on 13 April 1933 deputy prosecutor Josef Hartinger received a telephone call summoning him to the newly established concentration camp of Dachau, where four prisoners had been shot.

    The SS guards claimed the men had been trying to escape. But what Hartinger found convinced him that something was terribly wrong. Hitler had been appointed Chancellor only ten weeks previously but the Nazi party was rapidly infiltrating every level of state power. In the weeks that followed, Hartinger was repeatedly called back to Dachau, where with every new corpse the gruesome reality of the camp became clearer.

    Hitler’s First Victims is both the story of Hartinger’s race to expose the Nazi regime’s murderous nature before it was too late and the story of a man willing to sacrifice everything in his pursuit of justice, just as the doors to justice were closing.

Timothy W. Ryback is the co-founder of the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation at Leiden University in The Netherlands. His previous books include the highly acclaimed Hitler's Private Library: The Books that Shaped his Life, which has been translated into more than twenty languages and was described by Ian Kershaw as ‘elegantly written, meticulously researched, fascinating’, and The Last Survivor: Legacies of Dachau, which was a New York Times Notable Book for 2000. He has been involved with several institutions dealing with international affairs and served as a lecturer in History and Literature at Harvard University. He has also written for the Atlantic, the New Yorker and the New York Times. He and his wife reside in Paris.


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