Unbreakable: The Woman Who Defied the Nazis in the World's Most Dangerous Horse Race

Unbreakable: The Woman Who Defied the Nazis in the World's Most Dangerous Horse Race

by Richard Askwith
Unbreakable: The Woman Who Defied the Nazis in the World's Most Dangerous Horse Race

Unbreakable: The Woman Who Defied the Nazis in the World's Most Dangerous Horse Race

by Richard Askwith

Hardcover

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Overview

The courageous and heartbreaking story of a Czech countess who defied the Nazis in a legendary horse race.

Czechoslovakia, October 1937. Vast crowds have gathered to watch the threatened nation’s most prestigious sporting contest: the Grand Pardubice steeplechase. Notoriously dangerous, the race is considered the ultimate test of manhood and fighting spirit. The Nazis have sent their paramilitary elite—SS officers on a mission to crush the “subhuman Slavs”. The local cavalry officers have no hope of stopping them.

But there is one other contestant: a countess riding a little golden mare...

The story of Lata Brandisová is by turns enigmatic and inspiring. Born into privilege, she spent much of her life in poverty. Modest and shy, she refused to accept the constraints society placed on her because of her gender. Instead, with quiet courage, she repeatedly achieved what others said was impossible and rose above scandal to became her nation’s figurehead in its darkest hour.

Unbreakable is a story of endurance and defiance in an age of prejudice, fear, sexism, class hatred, and nationalism. Filled with eccentric aristocrats, socialite spies, daredevil jockeys—and a race so brutal that some consider merely taking part in it a sign of insanity—Unbreakable brings to life a unique hero, and an unforgettable love affair between a woman and a horse.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781643132105
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publication date: 09/03/2019
Pages: 440
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

Richard Askwith is the author of Feet in the Clouds, which was shortlisted for the William Hill and Boardman-Tasker prizes and was named by Runner’s World as one of the three best running books of all time. He is also the author of Running Free, which was short-listed for the Thwaites-Wainwright Prize, and Today We Die a Little, a biography of Emil Zatopek.

Table of Contents

1 Old Women's Gorge 1

2 The little countess 10

3 Horseplay 23

4 The dance of death 35

5 Broken in 45

6 The winds of change 52

7 The breaking of nations 58

8 A fresh start 67

9 Riding out 74

10 Allies 82

11 The great game 93

12 Stepping up 102

13 The first hurdle 109

14 Fight to the finish 117

15 The outsider 125

16 Mortality 141

17 Norma 151

18 The Germans 165

19 Taking sides 175

20 'A woman? Bah …' 191

21 Himmler's cavalry 201

22 October 1937 210

23 The Battle of Pardubice 224

24 Rejoice! 235

25 The reckoning 247

26 Brave new world 265

27 The fall 280

28 Enemy of the people 287

29 In the woods 295

30 The show goes on 305

31 Journey's end 314

32 The right stuff 320

33 Epilogue: the good and faithful servant 333

Sources and notes 343

Notes 357

Acknowledgements 402

List of illustrations 407

Index 408

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