Archive for the ‘Germany’ Category
Imagine for a moment that you have no money, no job and no prospects when you meet someone who could be your double. This twin version has everything you donâ€™t: a huge bank account, a luxury villa, a flashy sports car, and a loving, attractive husband. What would you do if your double offered to pay you to trade lives for a few days?….
I can be slow on the uptake, so it doesnâ€™t much upset me that I didnâ€™t understand the title to this book until I was walking the dog the morning after Iâ€™d finished it. Then, in sort of a forehead slapping a-ha moment, I got it. It, the title, is meant to send you off in one direction, only to surprise you and whip you back in another.
Berlin in 1927 is a difficult city to leave, even for the best of reasons. There’s the Wannsee and its beaches in summer, the Ice Palast and Luna Park in winter, and the ever beautiful Unter den Linden, the Tiergarten, the Zoologischer Garten and multiple cafes with rich pastries all year round. Berlin is the city of divine decadence, (remember the movie “Caberet?”), and a thriving film industry. And Weimar Berlin still suffers from losers’ blues, with a treasury depleted by war reparations it is not able to pay. The capital city is also where the reader gets a sense of how strong the NAZI Party has grown, from 27,000 members nationwide in 1925 to 108,000 in 1929.
THE BOOK THIEF is one of the best novels that I have read. Author Markus Zusak’s storyline is both sad and wonderful, as it deals with Germany during WWII and the Holocaust. His memorable characters have tremendous depth, and the plot is extremely original. However, what makes this book so extraordinary is the author’s writing, which, at times, is more poetry than prose. I frequently found myself reading passages of the elegantly written narrative aloud.
May 19, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Holocaust, Knopf, lyrical, Real Event Fiction, War Story, Young Adult Â· Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Facing History, Germany, Reading Guide, Unique Narrative, World Lit, y Award Winning Author
John Boyne’s novel, THE BOY IN THE STRIPED PAJAMAS is outstanding. It is beautifully written with a most powerful storyline. Nine year-old Bruno is an innocent, carefree boy growing up in Berlin during WWII. He has three “Best Friends For Life,” and wants to be an explorer when he grows up. Bruno lives in a beautiful mansion, complete with gardens and servants, along with his older sister Gretel, their lovely mother, and their father, a high ranking SS officer.
In Sebastian Fitzek’s THERAPY, forty-seven year old Dr. Viktor Larenz is “an eminent psychiatrist with a successful clinic in central Berlin” and “is the author of numerous books and was once a regular guest on radio and TV.” He has a wife, Isabell, and an eleven-year old daughter, Josy, whom he adores. Sadly, Larenz experiences a mental breakdown and is admitted to a facility for treatment. What precipitated his emotional collapse?