November 2009 Archive

Who will enjoy the book most?

I think the book has unusually broad appeal. Granted, I'm now writing as the publisher. But my enthusiasm after reading the text is what turned me into a publisher!

First and foremost, Canadian Escapades is a great story. There's plenty of action, balanced by the little details that bring scenes to life. It's a tale of courage and daring, without glossing over the nervousness and moments of despair. It's about longing for freedom, and working hard to obtain it.

It's a true story, packed with the combination of setbacks and lucky breaks that one expects from a carefully plotted novel.

I think you'll like it, even if you usually skip categories like action/adventure, survival, memoir, history, WWII, military life, reluctant reader, or German. The book is a quick read -- the equivalent of about 60 pages in each language (with English and German presented side-by-side, aligned by sentence).

It's a great gift for (nearly?) everyone on your holiday list! You can purchase directly from (updated) our store or from The "look inside" feature works; read a few pages and see what you think.

If you do enjoy some of the genres mentioned above, then read on for details.

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Action and adventure: 3 different escapes, each from a different camp using different tricks. Every chapter brings something new.

Survival: injury, cold, hunger, thirst ... and then triumph against the elements.

Memoir: the author tells the story in his own words, covering what happened and his personal reflections.

History: the book provides direct insight into the little-known topic of POWs in North America. (It's not a book of facts and figures; we'll be covering some of those here on the blog.)

WWII: it's a familiar tale ... with the roles reversed. (However, the book is NOT about the war itself, nor about the German perspective. It makes no attempt to address the awful realities taking place on the other side of the ocean.)

Military life: the story shows how members of the military go out of their way to help those on the same side (both colleagues and strangers) -- and also the respect and fair treatment that is often given to those on the other side.

Reluctant readers: the book is short, fast-paced and "high interest", so should hold the attention of many people (high school and beyond) who struggle with other books. The vocabulary is diverse, but words that are less common should be clear in context. (There are a FEW mild curse words, and a historically-accurate acceptance of smoking that some parents may want to explain.)

Bilingual (dual-language): I realize that only a small portion of our English-speaking readers happen to be learning German. But I want people to be able to share the book without regard to language.

If you have questions, please ask!

(Post updated to link to our new store. Updated again to add bold.)

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Canadian Escapades - new book takes readers on an electrifying journey

We may eventually create a separate section of the site for press releases. Meanwhile:

Canadian Escapades - new book takes readers on an electrifying journey

The true story of the author's 3 escapes from WW2 POW camps


Chelmsford, MA -- November 20, 2009 -- Germancosm is pleased to announce the publication of a new book: "Canadian Escapades: The true story of the author's 3 escapes from WW2 POW camps" by Klaus Conrad.

It's an exciting adventure ... with moments of quiet reflection. It's about longing for freedom, and working hard to obtain it. It's a story of individual courage, of friendship, and the selfless efforts of strangers who help along the way. It's about survival in the face of injury, cold, hunger, and thirst.

Contrary to the usual narrative, the author isn't escaping FROM the Germans, he is a German. His third escape takes him nearly 2,000 miles across Canada and into the US. Join Klaus Conrad on his journey.

From the book:

But we were met with a new mishap; I twisted my knee. ... About 30 miles still lay ahead of us; 30 miles of icy road between impenetrable forests, 30 miles of path through the wilderness without any human settlement, without any possibility of help if we couldn't go any farther, 30 miles of nothing but woods, snow and ice.


Those nights when the Northern Lights interrupted the darkness for minutes at a time will remain especially unforgettable; a fairy tale-esque gleam and twinkle ran across the sky.


The worst part was the thirst; ... Outside lay snow, only a few meters away and yet unreachable for us. We took turns pressing an eye against the peephole -- we thought we could smell, feel and taste the individual flakes coming down.


Then suddenly, as if they grew out of the earth, three guards stood in front of me - not ten steps separating us. 'Hands up!' -- I was told simultaneously from multiple sides.


I sunk ever deeper into the marsh and was nearly pulled under there. The black brew reached up to my chest, stinking bubbles rising up.


Why? Why does a POW escape anyway, when he suffers no physical emergency and everything is done to ease psychological stress? Why does he trade a life with adequate food in well heated shelter for the danger and hardship of an almost impossible escape?

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Rather than releasing a separate edition for English-speaking readers, we've included the original German text along with a faithful translation. The two languages are presented side-by-side on each page, aligned by sentence for the convenience of those who are learning the other language.

The book is a quick read at 132 pages. Retail price: $12.95. Available for immediate purchase at (updated) -- coming soon to and at More details on the book are available at

   Canadian Escapades - Kanadische Eskapaden
   The true story of the author's 3 escapes from WW2 POW camps
   by Klaus Conrad
   Translated by Maximilian Franck and Scott S. Lawton
   ISBN 978-0-9843271-0-2  (ISBN-10: 0-9843271-0-X)
   132 pages, 6" x 9", US Trade Paperback
   $12.95 US
   Published by Germancosm

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Germancosm is a new publisher of bilingual books (dual-language: English and German).

Media contact:

       Scott S. Lawton, Founder
       24 Colonial Dr.
       Chelmsford, MA  01824
       office: 800-856-4493
       mobile: 781-526-2462

We welcome inquiries for review copies or additional excerpts.

Historical footnote: In World War II, there were about 33,000 POWs held in camps across Canada, with an additional 425,000 throughout the US.

(Post updated 12/22/09 to link to our store and Amazon.)

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Welcome to the Canadian Escapades blog


After reading a good book or watching an interesting movie, I often want to learn more. We set up this blog to share information about the story and the time period. We'll link to information that we find around the Web, and cover books and movies that we think may appeal to readers.

We welcome your replies in the comments, or send questions to

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