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Reviews for Defying Vichy





Pike takes a micro-level approach, exploring acts of resistance from the earliest days of Vichy rule and Occupation through to the Liberation...These stories never fail to be insightful. 

Doctor David Lees - June 2020 - Modern and Contemporary France

This vivid and evocative account of the Resistance in Dordogne details the exploits of some remarkable personalities and makes us acutely aware of their courage and the dangers they faced. Robert Pike is to be applauded for bringing these stories to a wider readership.


Professor Hanna Diamond, author of Fleeing Hitler: France 1940 and Women and the Second World War in France, 1939-1948: Choices and Constraints

Using the pioneer work of local French historians in tracking down ex-Resisters, and doing his own interviews, Robert Pike has produced a book on the largely rural Dordogne full of specific names and places and pulsating with action and detailed stories.

Professor Rod Kedward, Author of La Vie en Bleu. France and the French since 1900, and In Search of the Maquis, Rural Resistance in Southern France 1942-1944.

Defying Vichy takes us into the heart of the French Resistance: the Dordogne region. Using eyewitness accounts and archival material, Robert Pike skilfully shows how ordinary people responded to the German occupation: some heroically, others less so. Above all, this story is rooted in the towns, villages and wooded hillsides of the Dordogne, which Pike knows so well, and which come alive in this moving account of the darkest and brightest period in French history.


Professor Matthew Cobb, author of The Resistance: The French Fight Against the Nazis and Eleven Days in August: The Liberation of Paris in 1944.

Pacey and engaging, this study explores the drama and complexity of the German occupation and resistance, highlighting moral ambiguities, deceit, betrayal and violence. A fascinating contribution to the field.


Professor Robert Gildea, author of Fighters in the Shadows and Marianne in Chains

By focusing on a single area of France - the Dordogne - Robert Pike has not only produced a meticulously researched and valuable contribution to the history of the German occupation, but a reminder of how courageously and selflessly many ordinary French men and women behaved


Caroline Moorehead, author of Village of Secrets and A Train in Winter

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