Library Ed. Recorded Books 2009
CS ISBN 9781440750700 $113.75 Sixteen cassettes
CD ISBN 978-1-4407-5072-4 $123.75 Sixteen CDs
DD ISBN multiple sources
Sebestyen’s history fills in many blanks for the listener on what really happened in each Eastern European Soviet bloc nation as it seized the sudden opportunity to free itself from Stalinist communism. The events were utterly unexpected by nearly everybody concerned, including the U.S. and the Soviets themselves. Both massive debt and the rise of Mikhail Gorbachev played critical parts. Paul Hecht narrates with dispassionate interest, pronouncing difficult words and parsing each sentence logically. Hecht stresses the key information without drama or high emotion. The focus is on Romania, Hungary, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and East Germany; there's not much about the other satellites or Russia itself. This is a learning experience par excellence. D.R.W. © AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine [Published: MARCH 2010]
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