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February 27, 2021

The Girl from Berlin by Kate Hewitt ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

There are a lot of WWII fiction books currently available and the best books are the ones that approach the war from a different angle. This book certainly did with its look at a German girl before and after the war.
This novel is told from two points of view:  Liesel from 1936 - 1946 and Sam Houghton in 1946.

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The Girl from Berlin
February 2021; Bookouture;  978-1838888008
audio, ebook, print (410 pages); historical fiction
The Girl from Berlin
 begins in Berlin in 1936.  Liesel, her younger brother, and her parents live in a large home.  Her father is a chemist who is working very closely with the Nazi party on several projects.  In the beginning, Liesel is so proud of her father and his importance in his world.  He knows many people in the Nazi hierarchy not only professionally but personally and attends many of their parties.  She lives a life of privilege and rarely thinks about what's going on in the world outside her door.  When she sees a Jewish man get beaten on the streets, she begins to have questions about Hitler and what was going on in Germany. The higher her father goes in his professional life. the more Liesel doubts what she's being told.  When she makes some decisions that will threaten her family, she realizes that despite the danger, she must do something to end the cruelty in her country.

In 1946, Sam Houghton who spent the war at a desk job in the US is sent to Germany to help the Army find war criminals.  His job is to look for chemists who were part of the Nazi party to find out if they knew anything that could be shared with the US government.  He has a new secretary, Anna, a beautiful woman who is hiding something.  As their relationship deepens, he needs to find out what she's hiding and why.  Will it end their romance when he finds out that she was aligned with the Nazi party during the war?

This is a well-researched novel about love and war, about doing the right thing despite the danger, and about following your conscience even if it will get you in danger.  I thought that the character of Leisel was very well written and I understood her change in attitude as she learned about what was going on in her country and her need to help. It made me think about what I would do and if I could be as brave as she was  This is a fantastic novel about the German people before and during the war and the way they were viewed by the world after the war.  If you enjoy WWII fiction, you don't want to miss this one.

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina with her husband of over 50 years.  She grew up in Michigan but now calls North Carolina home. Since her travel plans had to be canceled for this year, she is starting to make plans for travel in 2021. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and historical fiction. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on FacebookGoodreads, or Twitter

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  1. I like that this is different from other WWIi novels that I've read.