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The Butchers of Berlin av Chris Petit
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The Butchers of Berlin (urspr publ 2016; utgåvan 2017)

av Chris Petit (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner
432453,164 (3.23)Ingen/inga
"Berlin, 1943. August Schlegel lives in a world full of questions with no easy answers. Why is he being called out on a homicide case when he works in financial crimes? Why did the old Jewish soldier with an Iron Cross shoot the block warden in the eye then put a bullet through his own head? Why does Schlegel persist with the case when no one cares because the Jews are all being shipped out anyway? And why has SS officer Eiko Morgen been assigned to work with him? Corpses dressed with fake money, bodies flayed beyond recognition: are these routine murders or is someone trying to tell them something? "… (mer)
Medlem:jomacbe
Titel:The Butchers of Berlin
Författare:Chris Petit (Författare)
Info:Simon & Schuster Ltd (2017), Edition: Export, 496 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
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The Butchers of Berlin av Chris Petit (2016)

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I enjoyed this without ever fully grasping the plot. Haha. ( )
1 rösta adrianburke | Aug 24, 2017 |
The Butchers of Berlin – A Dark Wartime Thriller

Chris Petit has often been compared to fellow writers such as Robert Harris, David Peace and Joseph Kanon, all of which means that Petit is one hell of a writer. The Butchers of Berlin reminds me of writers of an early vintage, such as Ernst Haffer, Hans Fallada, Alfred Doblin and Erich Maria Remarque. My reasoning being is that he has captured the paranoia, the darkness, the evocative horror of the time and the absolute fear of those German writers from an earlier age.

The Butchers of Berlin is an SS procedural thriller that is investigating murder and financial irregularities during wartime, when the Germans were starting to feel the reversal in their fortunes on the battlefield. This is now a society that has been so far cut off from its leadership that rumours abound all over Berlin, where still having some money means a better chance of surviving events that others.

This is a society that now has three different security forces policing then from the regular police, Gestapo and the dreaded SS who had more power than the others together, the black uniforms striking terror wherever they went.

It is August 1943 and the prematurely white haired detective August Schlegel, a detective in financial crimes is appointed by his chief to investigate a murder. When he gets to the murder scene he finds that a block warden has been murdered by an old Jewish soldier who in then turned the gun on himself. To complicate matters the Gestapo are waiting to clear the block of the Jewish residents and take them for transportation to the East.

More bodies are turn up, some showing the effects of torture before they are killed all are Jewish, but Schlegel still investigates their murders even though nobody actually cares. This is not helped because Goebbels has demanded that Berlin becomes Judenfrei quickly so is not pleased when things are not going his way.

When Schlegel find an SS Officer in his office sat smoking, he explains he is there to help him, and not to worry. Schlegel worries more when he finds that the SS Office, Eiko Morgen, is an SS Judge who is not the most popular man with the leadership.

Things become more complicated when fake money turns up on the bodies of those murdered and the Gestapo never seem too far away from what is happening. Everyone just wants the murders squared away and blamed on a people that are being hounded out of Berlin.

Things take a turn for the worst for Schlegel when he also happens to look a little too closely at the Berlin wartime economy, at the agents that are being used to hunt for remaining Jews and how close to the leadership things appear to be. Also in 1943 the Allied Bombers were making frequent visits over Berlin and dropping their payload on the city, things would never be the same again.

The Butchers of Berlin is evocative of that time during the war when the city was running on empty, paranoia and fear ran hand in hand. Who you could trust was not just a question of the Jewish population but for all the citizens of Berlin, keeping a low profile was always a help. The City was naked of its German males many of whom were on the Eastern Front, and those still there were either injured or managed to get out of war service.

Chris Petit has written a highly enjoyable, dark and very readable thriller, set when Berlin was at its most pessimistic The Butchers of Berlin is evocative of earlier writers. The Butchers of Berlin also happens to be one of the best researched novels that I have read in a long time and some of the characters are real leave a reminder of those darker times.

Highly enjoyable historical crime thriller where nobody escapes unscathed, and that includes the reader. ( )
  atticusfinch1048 | May 28, 2016 |
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"Berlin, 1943. August Schlegel lives in a world full of questions with no easy answers. Why is he being called out on a homicide case when he works in financial crimes? Why did the old Jewish soldier with an Iron Cross shoot the block warden in the eye then put a bullet through his own head? Why does Schlegel persist with the case when no one cares because the Jews are all being shipped out anyway? And why has SS officer Eiko Morgen been assigned to work with him? Corpses dressed with fake money, bodies flayed beyond recognition: are these routine murders or is someone trying to tell them something? "

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