Image for The Picnic

The Picnic : An Escape to Freedom and the Collapse of the Iron Curtain

See all formats and editions

*WINNER OF THE ORWELL PRIZE FOR POLITICAL WRITING 2024*A gripping reconstruction of the daring escape to freedom of hundreds of East Germans in the summer of 1989 and how it led to the fall of the Berlin Wall. 'A pivotal – and exhilarating – moment in 20th century history. . . gripping' Observer'Intensely moving' Sunday Times'Engrossing and dramatic' William Boyd, New StatesmanIn August 1989, a group of Hungarian activists did the unthinkable: they entered the forbidden militarised zone of the Iron Curtain - and held a picnic.

On wisps of rumour, thousands of East German 'holiday-makers' had made their way to the border, surveilled by lurking Stasi agents.

The stage was set for the greatest border breach in Cold War history.

The fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of the Soviet Union - the so-called end of history - all would flow from what happened next.

Drawing on dozens of original interviews with those involved, Matthew Longo reconstructs this world-shaping event and its tumultuous aftermath. 'Evoke[s] the dramatic events in vivid colour . . . fascinating' Katja Hoyer, Telegraph *****‘Captivating . . . a vivid, fast-paced narrative’ New York Times* A GUARDIAN BIGGEST FICTION AND NON-FICTION FOR 2024 * A WATERSTONES ‘BOOK YOU NEED TO READ IN 2024’ * A FOYLES TOP TEN READ FOR JANUARY 2024 *

Read More
Special order line: only available to educational & business accounts. Sign In
£9.74 Save 25.00%
RRP £12.99
Product Details
Vintage
1529920981 / 9781529920987
Paperback / softback
06/02/2025
United Kingdom
256 pages
129 x 198 mm, 200 grams