Vilnis Bankovičs Shares Memoir in ‘Driven West, Taken East’

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New book is about author’s experience during German occupation of Baltic States, as translated by Maris Roze.

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Maris Roze was inspired to translate the memoir of author Vilnis Bankovičs as a testament of the harrowing events of his experience in World War II, as a result of which he suffered injury, capture,near-starvation, confinement in prison and the Soviet Gulag and spent many years as a second-class citizen in post-war Soviet occupied Latvia. She translates “Driven West, Taken East: A World War II Memoir of the Eastern Front” (published by Xlibris) to bring Bankovičs’ story to a larger audience whose understanding of the historical events of the war is largely focused on Western Europe and the Pacific campaigns.

This book is an English translation of the memoir of Bankovičs as a young Latvian inducted into the German army in 1943 during the German occupation of the Baltic States. It relates his military training, front-line battles, betrayal by the Germans, capture by the Russians,his deportation to the Gulag, his injury and near starvation, his ultimate survival and most importantly, the retention of his basic civility and humanity despite his ordeal.

“While the context of this book is war, violence, inhumanity and injustice, much of the narrative is presented from the perspective of a decent, unassuming, generous and sociable individual caught up in these larger events, trying to survive and to retain his personal core of values,” Roze explains.

Roze hopes that after reading “Driven West, Taken East,” readers will realize that individuals and individual values are meaningful, even powerful, and even capable of overcoming adversity on a massive, impersonal scale.

“Driven West, Taken East: A World War II Memoir of the Eastern Front”
By Vilnis Bankovičs
Hardcover | 6 x 9in | 286 pages | ISBN 9781514403617
Softcover | 6 x 9in | 286 pages | ISBN 9781514403624
E-Book | 286 pages | ISBN 9781514403631
Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

About the Author
Vilnis Bankovičs returned from his captivity to life in Soviet-occupied Latvia. Within two years of his return, he married a girl he met in Estonia and they raised two children. He lives in a house in central Riga. He is now retired and, at age 92, in reasonably good health. He spends his time reading, listening to classical music, working in his garden and tending his apple trees.

The translator, Maris Roze, born in Latvia and raised in the U.S., has a Ph.D. in English literature and has worked in higher education institutions over a 40-year career as an instructor and administrator. He has published two textbooks and written and edited numerous articles and reports, including self-study reports for accreditation purposes. He has also served as a consultant-evaluator for the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, a regional higher-education accreditation agency.

Xlibris Publishing, an Author Solutions, LLC imprint, is a self-publishing services provider created in 1997 by authors, for authors. By focusing on the needs of creative writers and artists and adopting the latest print-on-demand publishing technology and strategies, we provide expert publishing services with direct and personal access to quality publication in hardcover, trade paperback, custom leather-bound and full-color formats. To date, Xlibris has helped to publish more than 60,000 titles. For more information, visit or call 1-888-795-4274 to receive a free publishing guide. Follow us @XlibrisPub on Twitter for the latest news.

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