“Wie bald ‘nicht jetz’ ‘nie’ wird. How soon ‘not now’ becomes ‘never’.”

Everybody has a ‘moment.‘ Can everybody people string it out into a whole book? Probably not. But Douglas Kennedy does just that…

This book made me do three things that I’ve never done before as the direct impact of reading a novel.
1) Cry
2) Become emotionally involved
3) Enjoy reading long pages of one narrative

Douglas Kennedy, where have you been all my reading life? This novel was absolutely breath-taking from start to finish. At first I detested Kennedy’s attention to detail, the way he delved into setting a scene with the utmost clarity and flamboyant wording. But I found when the story really got going, I craved that detail. Kennedy crafted it so that you couldn’t help but be drawn in, every step of the way.

Emotional involvement in a book is often hard to achieve. There are some recent literary greats that do manage it. But this book went one step further. I was hooked by the love story between the two main characters, Thomas and Petra. I was torn by the betrayals brought against them. I was astounded and shocked by Petra’s plight. I felt the hurt that was described in minute detail, when major things happened (no spoilers). As for enjoying the long pages of narrative – wow. That’s never happened. I usually hate when authors prolong their stories by drawing out pages and pages of one person narrating to another. But it was a story within a story – within a story.

Germany and its History has always fascinated me. I have my own tumultuous past during a brief visit to the country a few years ago – completely unrelated to the topics in this book. So this provoked painful memories and also highlighted a few things that weren’t obvious to me before. I understand the History better now – an emotional involvement to a great romance, a historical insight, this book offers so much.

It was a love story, but it’s also historically important. It’s fiction, but it’s also completely feasible. Read this book. It will, honestly, change your life.

If you enjoyed: I can’t compare Douglas Kennedy to anyone. However I will say if you enjoy reading male authors and you want to read something that’s poignant then this is a book for you. Equally if you like reading works by Patrick Gale (A perfectly good man) or Jonathan Tropper (How to talk to a widower) then you’ll like this.

By the Way: Don’t ever let this book go. Look at my copy, it’s been read and read again. That rarely happens. For me when a book is finished, it’s time to move it on so that someone else can have the impact of it. I tell everyone else about ‘The moment’ but I’ll never give this old faithful away.

Discussion Points: What would your ‘moment’ be?

Date Published: 3rd May 2011.

Published by: Atria Books – Atria Publishing Group is a general interest publisher and a division of Simon & Schuster. The publishing group launched as Atria Books in 2002.

“Wie bald ‘nicht jetz’ ‘nie’ wird. How soon ‘not now’ becomes ‘never’.”

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