Born in 1917 in Fredensborg, Denmark, Sven Hassel joined the merchant navy at the age of 14. He did his compulsory year's military service in the Danish forces in 1936 and then, facing unemployment, joined the German army. He served throughout the Second World War on all fronts except North Africa. When the war ended in 1945 he was transferred between Russian, American and French prison camps, and upon returning to Denmark, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for treason. He began writing LEGION OF THE DAMNED during his time as a prisoner of war. His 14 Second World War books, which draw on his own encounters and experiences as a soldier, have sold over 53 million copies worldwide and have been published in more than 50 countries. He peacefully passed away in Barcelona in 2012, where he had resided since 1964.

It was supposed to be Hitler's glorious conquest of Russia...The 27th Penal Regiment have been ordered to invade the Soviet Union. They are half-starved and ill-equipped. To reach Moscow they must defeat the fearsome Red Army. But instead, they find themselves at the mercy of an even deadlier enemy: the killer cold of the Russian winter. As they advance across the icy wastes, they think only of survival.


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