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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
In need of inspiration? This gem of an autobiography, recounting the first 21 years in the life of Andris Grof, whom the world would come to know as Andy Grove, co-founder and current chairman of Intel Corporation, may be exactly what you're looking for.
This is not a book about high technology, Silicon Valley, or big business. It is a poignant story about human survival. In this particular case, it involves a very intimate account of the horrors faced by a young Hungarian-Jewish boy and his family, from the eve of World War II to their escape from Soviet tanks on the streets of Budapest in 1956.
Before he was 20, Grove tells us, he had witnessed "a Hungarian Fascist dictatorship, German military occupation, the Nazis' 'Final Solution,' the siege of Budapest by the Soviet Red Army...a variety of repressive Communist regimes, and a popular uprising that was put down at gunpoint."
Grove does not tell his amazing tale sentimentally or melodramatically. He almost underplays his experiences, using descriptions that are short, factual, articulate, and powerful. The understated hero somehow found the strength and courage to endure and persevere; a timely story in an age looking to understand how the worst of times can sometimes bring out the best in us.
Swimming Across is a wonderful book that reaffirms the strength and resilience of the human spirit in even the darkest hour. Treat yourself to this autobiography. Its calm, moving, and positive voice carries a welcome and powerful echo. (Elena Simon)
Elena Simon lives in New York City.