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RIDE OUT THE DARK by Christabel Bielenberg



Pub Date: Feb. 24th, 1971
Publisher: Norton

Toward the end of the war which Mrs. Bielenberg, an Englishwoman married to a German, survived just marginally at times, one of her friends said ""You'll have to write a book, Chris -- Life among the Huns."" Her book has had a remarkable response in Germany and perhaps it is because she endured, as they did, by keeping her eyes on the commonplace exigencies -- ""We are all living so close to death these days. If you want to keep sane you have to keep your mind on the living."" This included her three sons and toward the end excluded her husband who was arrested (primarily because of his association with a good friend who was hung after the July Plot of 1944) and later sent to Ravensbruck, the concentration camp. In the beginning, the Bielenbergs lived in Berlin where Peter worked for the Ministry of Economics. Later he resigned and took them to live in the Black Forest. Mrs. Bielenberg was not in a position to be overtly heroic; primarily what emerges is the sense of the ordinary people she knew who were non-participants and capable of great kindness. She has remembered the experience with fidelity and fairness; and even at this remove, it is pressingly involving.