What: The Secret Hunters
Who: Sir Ranulph Fiennes
When: Published 2001
Is it fact or is it fiction? A very good question.
This book leaves you wondering if it really is a true story. Basically it’s a story based on a journal found in an abandoned Antarctic hut.
It is the journal of a 55-year-old Jewish Canadian of German descent named Derek Jacobs who had been stranded at the hut in the early 1990s. The journal proved to be Jacobs’ account of his life, from the death march of wartime Germany to the advance of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia in 1974 to the Arctic, where Jacobs had come as a member of the Secret Hunters, an organization devoted to seeking out Nazi war criminals.
The story is fantastic and I found that I liked to assume that it was true. It’s been called fiction by the author due to “several uncheckable facts that forced the decision to label the book as fiction rather than non-fiction”.
Nonetheless, a very interesting story about a man who gets put through the meat grinder a number of times.
I’d love to meet Derek Jacobs…if he really exists at all.
Check it out at Goodreads.