Book Review: The Candy Bombers by Andrei Cherny 
5 Stars , Latest Posts , Non-Fiction / April 22, 2020

About:               The Candy Bombers: The Untold Story of the Berlin Airlift and America’s Finest Hour by Andrei Cherny  is a non-fiction account of one of America’s greatest and successful humanitarian missions. Mr. Cherny is an author, lawyer, and businessman. 640 pages Publisher: Putnam Adult Language: English ISBN-10: 0399154965   My rat­ing for The Candy Bombers — 5 Buy The Candy Bombers from Amazon.com* More Books by Andrei Cherny* Thoughts: The Berlin Airlift is a defining moment of the Cold War, the operation showed the people of Berlin, looked upon as enemies of America that we stand behind them. The Candy Bombers: The Untold Story of the Berlin Airlift and America’s Finest Hour by Andrei Cherny shows how the official airlift, as well as the unofficial act of dropping candy bars, shifted the views of Berliners to prefer democracy over communism. The airlift was instrumental because if showed the Germans that Americans do care about them, and that the US used all its might to help instead of destroy. Dropping candy is, in my opinion, what makes American great, a humanitarian operation done purely for altruistic reasons. I have heard of the Berlin Airlift, but never realized all the moving pieces…

Book Review: Metropolis by Philip Kerr

About: Metropolis by Philip Kerr is a novel featuring German detective Bernie Gunther, this time between World War I and II. This is the fourteenth book in the series, sadly published after Mr. Kerr’s death. 384 pages Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Language: English ISBN-10: 0735218897   My rating for Metropolis – 5 Buy Metropolis from Amazon.com* More book by Philip Kerr Thoughts: I have enjoyed the Bernie Gunther books previously, and was surprised to see this unfamiliar one pop up in my browser. I quickly found out that Metropolis by Philip Kerr was published after the author’s untimely death last year. This book is chilling, not because of the murders which occur, but because of the first hand eye witness to the rise of Nazism and Hitler. The excuses people make, to themselves and others, to support such regime while spitting on actual war heroes (for example) in order to make themselves feel better about their support. Bernie Gunther, the protagonist, doesn’t actually care, as usual. He is not a political animal, but a policeman stuck in a gray zone in which no one in particular gets his alignance. But at least he hates Nazis (and Communists). After World War I,…

Fun Facts Friday: Bel Kaufman
Fun Facts Friday , Latest Posts / May 10, 2019

Bel Kaufman (10 May, 1911 – 25 July, 2014) was an American author and educator known for her novel Up the Down Staircase (1964). More Books by Bel Kaufman* Ms. Kaufman, born as Bella, in Berlin, Germany to Russian immigrants. The family returned to Russia where her father became a physician and her mother wrote books under the name Lala Kaufman. The famous Yiddish writer Sholem Aleichem is Ms. Kaufman’s grandfather. In 1922 the Kaufman family emigrated to the United States, where her father practiced medicine in Newark, NJ. Because she couldn’t speak English, the 12 year old Bella was placed with first graders at the public school, however she credits the teacher who helped her learn English in elementary school for her love of English Literature. Putting a 12 year old with first grade students is a disgraceful and distasteful act which could have had a devastating lifetime effect (not a fact, just my take). Eventually Ms. Kaufman graduated from Hunter College, and got a Master’s degree in literature from Columbia University. Ms. Kaufman worked as a high school teach in New York City while writing part-time under the nom de plume “Bel” Kaufman. The author’s first novel, Up…

Book Review: Breach by W.L. Goodwater
4 Stars , Fantasy , Fiction , Latest Posts , Science Fiction / September 26, 2018

About:Breach by W.L. Goodwater is a novel taking place in the aftermath of World War II, where the remaining powers fight with magic as well as conventional means. This book is apparently the first in a series. 368 pages Publisher: Ace Language: English ISBN-10: 0451491033 My rating for Breach – 4Buy Breach from Amazon.com*More Books by W.L. Goodwater Thoughts:For a few years now I have enjoyed novels featuring magical fantasy. I don’t read them often because I’m very picky about the genre, which is why I believe that I enjoy the few that I read.  Breach by W.L. Goodwater combines several genres which I enjoy reading about: magic, World War II, geopolitics, and espionage. I thought this novel was very entertaining. The author managed to find a balance between telling a story and sending a message, or making a point, without hitting the reader over the head with it. The plot has a lot of moving parts, not all of them come to an end, but I’ll chalk that up that it’s the first in a series. The characterization, I felt, was pretty good. The author introduced a lot of people, but managed to only develop a few, err on the side of…

Book Review: The Honest Spy by Andreas Kollender

About: The Honest Spy by Andreas Kollender (translated by Steve Anderson) is a historical fiction book about a German clerk spying for the USA. This is a fictionalized account of Fritz Kolbe, one of the most important resources the allies had during that time. 368 pages Publisher: AmazonCrossing Language: English ISBN-10: 1542045002 My rat­ing for The Honest Spy  — 5 Buy The Honest Spy  from Amazon.com* More Books by Andreas Kollender Thoughts: The Honest Spy by Andreas Kollender (translated by Steve Anderson) is an amazing account, fictionalized as it may be, of Fritz Kolbe, an ethical man living in a most unethical place and doing his best to do what he knows is right. The author created a very convincing novel, telling the story of Mr. Kolbe both in the present as well as with the advantage of hindsight. Even though the story is about a middle aged clerk, a gray man with a gray job, it was an intense read full of suspense and humor. The story captures the integrity and bravery of Mr. Kolbe. He jeopardized his life over the course of years to do what he believes is right. Sadly, after the war, the Germans considered Mr. Kolbe a traitor and he…

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