Book Review: While the Music Played by Nathaniel Lande

About:
While the Music Played: A Remarkable Story of Courage and Friendship in WWII by Nathaniel Lande is a historical fiction book following a young German musician throughout World War II. Mr. Lande is an author, journalist, and film maker.

The publisher is giving away one (1) copy of this book – enter via the rafflecoper form at the end of the post (OVER).

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My rat­ing for While the Music Played4
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Thoughts:
This is an epic story which spans decades, revolving around the protagonist, Max Mueller, and his experiences mainly during World War II.  As with other impressing historical fiction boons, While the Music Played: A Remarkable Story of Courage and Friendship in WWII by Nathaniel Lande is well researched and involves historical figures in the narrative, as well as excerpts from newspapers.

The author follows several people throughout the book, some famous, some well-known, and others are just trudging day to day trying to survive. The author weaves in history whenever is possible, and it seemed to me that he did not take many, if any, literary licenses to make the story move along.

The book is geared towards the YA crowed, and is written that way. One does not have to have much knowledge of history as the author lays it all out in very simple terms. Usually history is not simple, and intertwined. I thought the author chose well as to what to present and omit, as is relevant to the story and to move it along.

The character of Max, a very idealistic boy in a country where nationalism and propaganda were being fed to you daily, was complex and one could certainly tell he is growing up fast, maybe too fast as no 13 year old I know is like him. I like to believe that boys like him existed, and we have some evidence that they did, which I find amazing and cannot even begin to imagine people I know in that kind of situation.

This is a good novel for adults who want a quick, easy and enjoyable read as well as teens who would find something of Max in themselves. I appreciated the ending where the author gives an overview of the war with the benefit of hindsight, as well as recounting the relating between the fictional and historical parts.

Synopsis:
Max Mueller, a teenager blessed with a musical ear, faces a changing world as Germany’s racial laws and war machine impacts the whole world. Max’s father, a famous German conductor, is drafted into the German army for the purposes of Nazi cultural propaganda.

Everyone Max knows is forced to choose sides, his best friends is Jewish, and so is the girl he’s falling in love with. The more the war progresses, Max loses his innocence and his world view, along with what it means to be German.

Buy While the Music Played from Amazon.com*
More Books by Nathaniel Lande*

  • Give­away ends: May 5, 2020

  • Winners must have a valid e-mail address

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  • Win­ners will have 24 hours to write back with their address, oth­er­wise an alter­nate win­ner will be picked

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Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer: I got this book for free.
*Ama­zon links point to an affiliate account

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