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(cover: Susan Erony)

The Wild Place by Kathryn Hulme (78,000 words)

In this memoir, Kathryn Hulme, a United Nations relief officer in Bavaria from 1945 until 1951, records the daily life, hopes and struggles of over 100,000 Displaced Persons housed by UNRRA at Wildflecken, a former training camp for Nazi SS troops, and in other DP camps.


“[A]n unforgettable report on the struggle, the plight, the defeat or the eventual redemption of countless victims of the time.” — George Shuster, The New York Times

“A shattering book, and one that defines, once and for all, the meaning of that ghastly twentieth-century invention, the displaced person.” — The New Yorker

“The Wild Place is a rare book — powerful and exciting, compassionate and disturbing, tragic and funny — drawn from great and strange material. It is a verbatim record of the most dramatic human debris of our time, the homeless hordes left on deposit in Germany.” — The New Yorker

“Little has been recorded of the heroic postwar work with masses of displaced persons, and it will be hard to find a better account than this. It is crowded with people and incidents and has a special vitality as well as the ring of truth. Highly recommended.” — Library Journal

“Miss Hulme’s story will seize your imagination, keep you fascinated, rouse your compassion, admiration, and respect... The top book of American nonfiction published this year...” — San Francisco Chronicle

“A beautiful book, heartbreaking and at the same time veined with humor. It projects the passionate sense of purpose experienced by a compassionate woman struggling desperately to salvage human lives, and it leaves us with a quickened awareness of the astounding tenacity of the human spirit, the astounding durability of hope.” — The Atlantic Monthly

“A sensitive and moving report, by an UNRRA field worker, of her five years’ experience in European D.P. camps after the war.” — Henry L. Roberts, Foreign Affairs

“A deeply felt and deeply moving record of this whole tragedy of displacement and dispossession, this is certain to engage the heart of any reader who has one.” — Kirkus Reviews