Posts In: war

Nowhere in Africa

April 29, 2017 Autobiography novel

Full of drama, filled with unforgettable characters, with mild humor and bitter irony, painted by the unique African color, Stephanie Zweig’s novel Nowhere in Africa has all the qualities of the book, which is destined to live long. In general, the plot is rather unusual and interesting (for me personally). The family of a successful Jewish lawyer moves from Nazi Germany to Kenya. And a new life begins, very different than the life, to which they are accustomed. It is necessary to live, to learn new language, to know new information about customs and people. They have to change themself. It is very difficult for Walter and Jettel. The Motherland does not let them go, they are full of anxiety and sorrow for those who stayed and could not come, and also the hope that all this is temporary. But the past life is a ghostly memory now, but the present real, and there are too many problems and worries here. It is necessary to live here, to survive, to trust the instinct, the call of the soul, because no lawyer practice will teach how to be saved from malaria, torrential rains and other problems and conditions of African life. Africa does not like weak people, and Walter...

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The Oppermanns

April 16, 2017 Novel

This book was written in the very beginning of the nightmare of the 20th century. Fascism has only just come to power, and has already done so much that has allowed to find material for the whole work! Honestly, when I read it, it seemed that all this was already written after all the horrors, when all the fascist acts were recognized worldwide, became known and analyzed in terms of crimes against humanity. So everything is fully and thoroughly described, that one can not even believe that it was created in such a short time. The novel begins in 1932 and consists of three thematic parts: yesterday, today, tomorrow. The novel tells us about the family of German Jews Opperman. They are honest, smart, they pay taxes, devoted to their country and work for the good of Germany. Their ancestors fought in the First World War for Germany, helped financially its government. They are righteous citizens who love and honor German history and literature, language. Therefore, until the last they do not notice that their beloved country turns into a monster. Jews are thrown out of the transport, they are forbidden to visit public places. And in schools fascism comes In the form of a...

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The German Boy

April 13, 2017 History novel, Novel

It is a rainy day of 1947, at the railway station in the English wilderness red-haired Elisabeth Mander meets her nephew, a German boy, whose mother died. Elisabeth is confused. What to expect from this teenager, who certainly hates the enemies of his country. But the reality is much more complicated. That evening a German boy gives Elizabeth a picture of a girl with long copper hair going through the sun, under the trees there is a cafe, and at the table a man sits and watches the girl. Elizabeth recognizes herself. But who is this man in the picture? And what does her German nephe, whose mental state is disrupted by Nazism and war, have to do with the painting of a Jewish artist? So, this way begins the story of two families in the background of historical events that were in Europe in the twentieth century. It is a slow, but powerful story about family secrets, betrayal and love with lyrically and precisely written out details of that era. It is a story not about the boy. Or rather about the boy too, but more about his mother Karen and her sister Elizabeth, their friend Rachel and her brother Michael… About how young people loved, suffered, betrayed, loved again and...

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Spark of Life

April 11, 2017 Novel

It is always very difficult to say something about such books. It is very hard to read it, but it is impossible stop reading at the same time. You’re overcome with emotions and feelings. One want to whisper to the heroes “don’t give up! Help is coming.” It’s terrible to believe that all this things were here, in this world in which you habitually get up in the morning to work and complain about the morning traffic jams. It is impossible to imagine what these people had to go through and how they could not lose the “spark of life” in themselves. Everyone without exception should read such books. To know that war is only not battles and heroic feats on the battlefield, to know that hope and team spirit can save hundreds of lives, even If you think you’re in hell. Perhaps in a hundred years, when the word “war” will be used only in lessons of history, a child asks: “Why are there no more wars on Earth?” And the teacher will tell him that it’s all about awareness. It’s about the fact that people have learned what is the destruction, that no one can decide that his life is more valuable or more important...

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Arch of Triumph

March 30, 2017 Novel

Arch of Triumph is one of the most beautiful European novels of the XX century. A novel about love, war and death. And I know that in this book there are despair, sadness, pain, I know it… and still open the first page… Four people. A man, a miserable romantic, devoid of illusions and temporarily named in this short life as Ravic. A woman, amazon with aqua eyes, Joan. A professional surgeon, the best of the best, who has to hide from the police in someone another country, without betraying himself, working in secret, giving all his merits to another. An actress, realizing that her talent is not perfect, bright and emotional, different from many and dreaming of being loved and admired. What unites them? Of course, love. Tragic, somewhat crazy, but still love. They are amazing, it is impossible not to fall in love with them. And how Joan changes throughout the book! For the first time we meet an indifferent to everything, “an empty woman”, and by the end she gets more beautiful. And at the same time she changes Ravic, turning his life upside down, shaking up the old memories. This is not an ordinary book. It’s the whole life, that gives you...

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House without Guardians

March 26, 2017 Novel

In 1955 the novel House without Guardians was called by French publishers as the best foreign book. It is the story of the first post-war generation, the story of two boys – Martin and Henry, whose fathers died at the front. House without Guardians is a novel about those who stayed in this very house; about those who managed to return to this very house; and, certainly, about those who never will return to this house. The main characters of the novel are boys who were born during the war, who are not destined to see their fathers; also there are their mothers whose young, full of life husbands were sent the war, and they received only some words about duty and death… Yes, of course, there are still all the rest, young and old, well-bred and not virtuous, they are all trying to return to Life. It’s amazing how all of them, in fact, are lost, abandoned, abandoned, forgotten how to live and feel full. Even those who have not yet had time to learn this, boys whose fathers, who are slightly older than their present, participate in their upbringing from an old photo on the wall. Good book. It does not have that power that in many books about...

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Tales of a Long Night

February 2, 2017 Novel

It is the final work in the work of one of the most interesting German writers. The work itself and especially its form are also intersting. There are no actions, except the ending. There are people, there are stories that they tell, which perfectly show their worldview. Let’s start with the main characters and the plot. It was the end of the Second World War. The main hero of the novel is a young guy who returned from the war disabled, without a leg that he lost during the war. Here you can immediately feel an unobtrusive motive of physical disability, passing through some works of Alfred Döblin (for example, Berlin Alexanderplatz), a symbol of renunciation of everything carnal. He, disabled, with a psychological trauma, comes to his home, where conflict is already taking place. And Edward acts as a catalyst. He inquisitively is looking for the truth, after finding which he is deeply disappointed. Once inside the walls of his home, he begins to notice that everything has changed for the worse (or everything was like that, but he did not notice). A father who does not need him, a mother who has not loved her father for a long time (and did she love?). Edward (the main character)...

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The Tin Drum

December 25, 2016 Novel

Günter Grass became popular after the publication of the novel The Tin Drum. In the novel the author criticizes the German policy of the first half of the 20th century. In the novel there is also the theme of human vices – those ones that the main character Oskar tries to escape, trying to remain a child. The most difficult thing when you talk about this book is to write about what it is. If we talk about what’s on the surface, I shall try to write briefly. In the 1930s, a family lives in the city of Danzig, relationships in the family are very complicated. And a boy named Oskar lives in this famil . The boy is amazing in all respects. When he was three years old, he received a red-and-white tin drum, he keeps it with him all the time. The drum became his best friend, his eternal passion and his damnation at the same time. With his drum he can tell you any story, describe any person, take you through the years, move to another city, to another life. And Oskar is very little boy. In Oscar there are a lot of unusual and strange things. People who surround him, the events that happen to him, are no less strange...

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