Much like the book “Notes of a Russian Sniper” by Vassili Zaitsev, this book is the Memoirs of Joseph Pilyushin who was a sniper who fought from July of 1941 through Febuary of 1944 up at and around Leningrad. Pilyushin was not one of the top ranking snipers during the war, though 136 kills is very impressive, but his story is quite compelling and his writing style is much more personal. He does not actually talk in much detail about the details of the conflicts but does a good job of portraying the emotions and feelings. Pilyushin was older, 38 years of age, when he went to war so his perspective is quite a bit different than most memoirs you read. Of course, the great losses he suffered during the war would also change his outlook on the war; he lost his wife and one of his sons earlier in the war from artillery shelling, and then lost his other son later in the war, again to the shelling of the city Leningrad. Because of these losses, the accounts are more personal and emotional but there are still some good accounts of combat and the use of snipers during the battles on the Eastern front. The translation to English is not bad, but not as good as “Notes of a Russian Sniper”. There are a few notes to help explain things as well as explain some corrections made from the original Russian version of the book that were inaccurate. It is a good read without the graphic detail and provides an insight into the emotional perspective of an older soldier literally fighting to protect his home town.

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