Staszek, a soon graduating law student, met teenage Iza after they both moved to Warsaw from their small villages near the Polish capital. They came there to better their lives, but the immediate goal was to continue their education.
In the summer of 1939, Staszek had only one course left before graduating, and Iza just enrolled to the high school. In the early morning of September 1, the Germans invaded Poland, and their young lives in a matter of hours turned upside down.
Staszek and Iza lost their innocence when both were pitched against the brutality of the attackers. They got married and had a little baby boy. While scrambling to survive in the besieged city, anticipating the end of war, the fate pitched them against yet another outburst of violence. During World War II, the Warsaw Uprising was the single largest military effort to oppose German occupation.
A young group of Polish fighters didn’t get any help from the Russians stationed just across the river, and the Germans slaughtered the youth, and did so with much of the citizenry of Warsaw. Then the invaders intensified terror. While on his way from work, the Germans picked Staszek up in a roundup on a street in Warsaw, and in a cattle car sent him to Auschwitz. But after the divine intervention, Staszek did survive and could tell the story.
The Roundup is a collection of stories about how the ordinary people survived the carnage of war and helped each other in the face of murderous oppressors, and what they did to resist the ruthless invaders trying to tell them how to live their lives.