Sphere has announced that actor Allan Corduner will narrate the audiobook of Parting Words by 100-year-old human rights lawyer Benjamin Ferencz.
The hardback and audio editions will publish simultaneously on the 31st December 2020.
Parting Words: 9 Lessons for a Remarkable Life will tell the story of Ferencz's life: from poor immigrant making mischief in 1920s New York to Harvard graduate, then Second World War soldier and human rights lawyer – who not only prosecuted 22 leading Nazis after his team uncovered one million murders committed by the Einsatzgruppen, but also (pro bono) helped victims who survived the Nazi regime reclaim their property and achieve compensation from the West German government, and then helped set up the International Criminal Court with the aim of preventing world leaders from committing war crimes.
Throughout, Ferencz will impart lessons he has learned throughout his life, from ambition and determination, to happiness and love, says the publisher.
Emily Barrett, editorial director, said: "The Nuremberg Trials began 75 years ago this week and Ben is the last person alive who can share a first-person account of what it was like to prosecute at them; we need to be listening to what he has to say while we still can, especially as the battle against far-right and racist rhetoric is far from over. Allan shares Ben’s Jewish heritage and really understood the importance and brilliance of Ben’s book – he’s a perfect narrator for something this special.
"This year has been a year to fall in love with 100-year-old soldiers who’ve used their good-natured spirit to help their fellow humans; readers and listeners alike will be astonished at how much this sums up Ben Ferencz, and how much they can learn from his wit, warmth and optimism."
Corduner commented: "My maternal grandfather was taken from Berlin in November 1941 on one of the first transports to Riga, and within minutes of his arrival, lined up on the edge of a freshly dug trench with hundreds of others and shot dead. His crime? Being Jewish. So I am honoured to be reading Ben Ferencz’s Parting Words. Intolerance and racism are rife at present in our increasingly polarised world. This eloquent book must be read."
Corduner has previously narrated Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief (Random House AudioBooks, 2006) and Anthony Horowitz’s Magpie Murders (Orion Publishing Group Limited, 2016).