Rudolf Ditzen, who wrote under the name Hans Fallada, lived a chaotic life. Under the Nazis, Fallada wrote and published a series of gritty novels of the type that German critics call neue Sachlichkeit, or new objectivity. In , he published with Aufbau-Verlag Jeder stirbt fuer. Every Man Dies Alone or Alone in Berlin is a novel by German author Hans Fallada. denounced, arrested, tried and executed. Fallada's book was one of the first anti-Nazi novels to be published by a German after World War II. Alone in Berlin [Hans Fallada, Michael Hofmann] on lapacalases.cf Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the month in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries.
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Alone in Berlin book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Inspired by a true story, Hans Fallada's Alone in Berlin is the. Inspired by a true story, Hans Fallada's Alone in Berlin is the gripping tale of an ordinary man's determination to defy the tyranny of Nazi rule. Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada, , available at Book Depository with free delivery worldwide.
Alone in Berlin
I can't even begin to imagine what he experienced. You can see flashes of his talent throughout, but the whole lacks a certain consistency.
The story is a fictionalized account of the true story of a working class couple that distributed postcards anonymously throughout Berlin urging Germans to revolt, sabotage and generally undermine the Nazis whenever possible. The couple attached great importance to the postcards, believing they were having the desired effect on the populace.
Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada, review
Of course the postcards were generally reviled and went unheeded, only holding significance to their authors think all of us here on Goodreads. Yet even when the couple is captured, learn that their postcard campaign accomplished nothing, and they are condemned to death, Falluda captures their dignity. View all 46 comments. This book is probably something like Catch but not really, I don't know what other book would be comparable , but set in Germany during WW2. It centres around Otto and Anna Quangel who decide to protest against the Nazi regime through the writing of postcards.
Also central to the story are Eva Kluge and her estranged husband Enno, as well as some other characters such as Eserlich of the Gestapo. I am giving this 3 stars as I am really not sure what to make of the story, in parts it is almost f This book is probably something like Catch but not really, I don't know what other book would be comparable , but set in Germany during WW2. I am giving this 3 stars as I am really not sure what to make of the story, in parts it is almost farcical and ridiculous, and in other parts it is very cruel and unforgiving.
There were various points in the book where I was tempted to give up reading it, but there was also a thread that kept me intrigued, being could Otto and Anna get away with their protest unscathed.
This is apparently based on a true story so in that respect it was an interesting insight into life in Nazi Germany for those who were just trying to live their lives and be true to themselves. Feb 26, Marilou K.
Jul 26, J. There is good reason to skip the category of books known as Historical Fiction, and sometimes the reason is obvious. The dutiful re-imagining of epic, faraway historical circumstances, conversation intimately exchanged there, often on the dizzying verge of tragedy or sacrifice The difficult aspect to sustain across the length of a novel is that 're-imagining' part, wherein the author privately has no idea of the world he's busy orche There is good reason to skip the category of books known as Historical Fiction, and sometimes the reason is obvious.
The difficult aspect to sustain across the length of a novel is that 're-imagining' part, wherein the author privately has no idea of the world he's busy orchestrating for the reader, but bluffs along anyway, hoping that the reader may know even less. Nazi Germany.
Hans Fallada has no such obstacle to overcome, having been a writer in Germany throughout the National Socialist rise and living just long enough after the war to write Every Man Dies Alone.
This is fiction, but composed with the certainty, and validity, that only come from having lived through the times. A large cast of characters conveys the layered, deeply paranoid society, regulated by informants and bizarre new laws, hopelessly unable to voice contradictory opinion, from the blindered beaurocracy downwards to the ineffectual dissidents, crushed in the machinery. This isn't an attempt to sanitize the guilt on the national character, or explain away widespread inhumanity as unfortunate excess.
And it doesn't try to make the case that there was anything like effective resistance against the Reich. Nor does it claim that its characters are able to salvage their humanity in small acts of defiance-- these people are bent, broken and obliterated by the regime.
Instead it is an attempt to humanize the guilty everyman of the nazi era, to render the tragedy of each single soul in the inferno. Sad and remorseful all the way, a kind of No Exit with consequences. Il potere delle parole per tentare di smuovere le coscienze, dunque, nonostante il controllo, la paura, il rischio. Attorno ad essi ne gravita un numero spropositato, persi in pagine e pagine che talvolta si fatica a seguire, quasi fossero state scritte senza controllo.
Ne consegue un libro pesante, nonostante il tema trattato. Troppe apparizioni evitabili, troppe parole, troppo tutto, che fa perdere il gusto della lettura. O forse non era la tipologia di libro che dovevo leggere in questo momento, nonostante il mio sfrenato interesse nei confronti del momento storico protagonista.
It certainly was gripping, and some of the awkwardnesses neologisms, clunkiness are probably translation, but after I read the author's biography, the book fell at least a notch and a half for me. Fallada was your ordinary Ordinary German, whose taste for addictive substances landed him in trouble with the uber folk from time to time, but mostly he wrote to please them as long as they were around to be pleased.
And he survived, quite handily. Then the war is over, and now he's got to please an It certainly was gripping, and some of the awkwardnesses neologisms, clunkiness are probably translation, but after I read the author's biography, the book fell at least a notch and a half for me.
Then the war is over, and now he's got to please and appease his new Soviet overlords. So he writes this heavy handed tale of Good Germans tragically bucking the regime and taking pity on old Jews, with some healthy socialist realist love for the worker and the peasant thrown in.
At least as problematic as Irene Nemirovsky and nowhere near as well written. Oct 04, Ian rated it liked it Shelves: I was looking forward to reading this much vaunted novel, written by Hans Fallada just after the Second World War ended, the author having lived in Nazi Germany throughout that era. I assumed that it would be a devastatingly real portrayal of life under Hitler's yoke and at times it did feel like that.
However, I just didn't get a sense of realism from far too many of the characters and this detracted immensely from my enjoyment. The main story of the Quangels efforts to revolt in their small, u I was looking forward to reading this much vaunted novel, written by Hans Fallada just after the Second World War ended, the author having lived in Nazi Germany throughout that era. The main story of the Quangels efforts to revolt in their small, unassuming way was fascinating, but the sub plots involving the ultra Nazi Persicke clan, and the low lifes Borkhausen and Enno Kluge at times were almost picaresqely comic, and this just grated on me.
Still enjoyable but I think I went into it with my expectations too high. View all 4 comments. I have to say I was looking forward to reading this book greatly. It was a most enlightening book on what a person s can do even up against the huge Nazi regime. It is a story about a couple Otto and Anna Quangel, who after losing their only son in the war, embark on a postcard writing campaign against the Third Reich. There are so many elements of courage defined in this novel as half of Germany seemed to be watching the other half for activies against the Nazis.
In many ways the book had shad I have to say I was looking forward to reading this book greatly. In many ways the book had shades of where Big Brother was always watching and waiting for a chance to turn someone in to the Gestapo. There were a host of characters that passed in and out of the Quangel's life and of course many of them were members of the Nazi party which the Quangel's refused to join.
This campaign of postcards and eventually letters were left randomly and the Gestapo were lead on a merry chase trying to finding the perpetrators. They became so frustrated that they changed the man who headed up the case Escherich midstream to another who chose to ignore clues thankfully to capturing the culprits.
There is a monstrous Obergruppenfuhrer Prall, who overseas the activities. The first postcard read "Mother! The Fuhrer has murdered my son. The Fuhrer will murder your sons too, he will not stop till he has brought sorrow to every home in the world" The story is about courage in a country where "Every man may die alone, but nobody lives alone, or entirely unobserved.
The only objection I had was to the writing. This is a long, laborious novel written more like a police report. It was factual and gave little of the author's feelings. Mr Fallada wrote the massive book in twenty-eight days but died before he could edit it and see it published.
The book is also translated from German and that might have caused some issues with the reading for me. So the three stars are given for the writing, but in my heart I would give a million stars to the Quangels or anyone else who tries in their own way to speak out against oppression and villainy.
Jan 31, Katerina rated it liked it Shelves: Hmm not sure what I should say about this book. It left me with mixed feelings and thus a medium rating.
Not a really bad book, but nothing amazing.
The path of least resistance
It is basic the story of a couple during the Second World War in Germany and their effort to resist the totalitarian governing of Hitler. I appreciate the fact that the writer did not go through in describing in detail the tortures and the way of interrogating, but still he doesn't lose the ability to create feelings pity, anger, despair for the h Hmm not sure what I should say about this book.
I appreciate the fact that the writer did not go through in describing in detail the tortures and the way of interrogating, but still he doesn't lose the ability to create feelings pity, anger, despair for the heroes. There were points where I had to press myself not to quit it, but in total I think it was worthy. After all it is based on a real case and it does show up to a point the fear and the terror the regime had created inside Germany.
My favourite character was surprisingly detective Escherich. If ever there was a book in which the title was also the spoiler, this would be the one. The Quangels are a humble, working class couple in Nazi-ruled Berlin. But unlike many, they have a solid reason to be afraid: All through the city, they leave anonymous postcard If ever there was a book in which the title was also the spoiler, this would be the one. All through the city, they leave anonymous postcards, decrying the lies and brutality of the Nazis.
Getting caught in these subversive acts is tantamount to a death sentence, but as the months go on and the evidence piles up, capture becomes inevitable. In the face of interrogation, imprisonment, and execution, the Quangels must decide—how far can one person go in a fight that they cannot win? At times this is a story that drags, both in its pacing and its seeming hopelessness. There is an entire section—in which the police hunt for the culprits—that could have been eliminated from the book.
But the philosophical tone of the book, the quiet, fierce dignity of the Quangels, and the simple truths of their actions and sacrifices are the heart of this story, and the unnecessary subplots are just excess flesh that slows it down. The most unexpected gift of this novel is its moral ambiguity.
You will come to understand this only through patiently reading the subtext and trying to understand the motivations of the characters—as the afterword points out, few people collaborated with the Gestapo willingly, and many people offered resistance with deep ambivalence, fear, and reservations. The risks were great and the rewards were few, as the Quangels learned.
Sometimes, the only result was simply knowing that you had tried to resist. Cold comfort, when you die alone. View 1 comment. Feb 28, Chris Rose rated it liked it. What a fabulous story! This brave couple, therefore, forms some kind of resistance, however insignificant an idea their efforts may initially appear.
Based very much on f What a fabulous story! Based very much on fact, the two of them anonymously drop cards boasting anti-government sentiment into official buildings. Hans Fallada died before publication; he was an ill, tormented man. And his state says a lot for how the book turned out. He was so desperate to tell this story that he got everything down in a matter of weeks, with a rushed revision — imagine that, pages in my copy, small text!
We all know that the real writing process is the editing, and this book is laden in clumsy paragraphs and, as a whole, ought to have been half its size.
But what a story! Fascinating story behind this novel. The authors pseudonym "Hans Fallada" was derived from characters in Grimm fairy tales. The book is a novelisation of a true story based on a couple living in Berlin during WW2 who following the death of their son embarked upon a protest consisting of postcards distributed at random in the city.
For three years they waged their futile campaign until inevitably the Gestapo caught up with them. The novel raises some interesting moral questions. Whether it's nobl Fascinating story behind this novel. Whether it's nobler to suffer the slings and arrows or to take arms against them - even when the result is almost certainly failure.
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It's the kind of dilemma faced by many of us in our daily lives. Though heightened by the circumstances of the protagonist here who face certain death. Their bravery is admirable yet almost pathetic. From the vantage point of the 21st century and having met many young Germans it's still hard to understand how it happened.
The Third Reich I mean. The ultimate police state. Rule of fear. The irony is that Fallada in his own small way collaborated with this regime though it didn't do him any good. He died before the book that would make his reputation was published. The prose here isn't stylish. In fact in places it's downright clunky. But the story is riveting and the characters believable.
There were sections that made me rage against the Nazi bullies.
And feel sick at those who spied on their neighbours. A story well worth telling. Excellently paced, gripping and realistic account of a couple's modest attempt to stealthily spread anti-Nazi propaganda after receiving an insincere condolence letter from the government on the death of their son in battle.
It was interesting to observe the reactions called up by the couple's ineffectual rebellion, from the suicide of a Gestapo investigator, to the terror stricken reaction of members of the general public. There are acts of cowardice and cupidity, but also nobility and generosit Excellently paced, gripping and realistic account of a couple's modest attempt to stealthily spread anti-Nazi propaganda after receiving an insincere condolence letter from the government on the death of their son in battle.
There are acts of cowardice and cupidity, but also nobility and generosity. View 2 comments. Cred pornind si de la faptul ca a fost scrisa in 24 de zile si autorul a murit la scurt timp ca e o ciorna, pe care ar fi vrut sa o slefuiasca in timp.
Poate ma insel, poate asa sec si stangaci scrie Fallada, dar chiar si titlurile de capitole par niste oase, ca sa stie unde sa puna carnea pe schelet mai tarziu. Si eu sunt un cititor extrem de usor de emotionat pe tema victimelor nazismului. Per ansamblu, o dezamagire a asteptarilor prea mari pe care le aveam de la cartea asta. Nov 25, Ray rated it liked it Shelves: This is an excellent book detailing a story of resistance in Berlin during World War 2.
It is based loosely on a true story - a sort of Nazi "In Cold Blood". Though written in the prose was very modern in my view.
Pleasant to read but often unsettling. At times the book is unrelentingly depressing as the apparent futility of resistance is demonstrated in stark terms.
Death is everywhere. The main protagonists are redeemed at the end don't want to give too much away here. It is great on the This is an excellent book detailing a story of resistance in Berlin during World War 2. It is great on the drudgery and savagery of Berlin as the war closes in on its inhabitants. There were some excellent passages on the arbitraryness of life and death in this time - the Gestapo view is represented as everyone is guilty of something and we know exactly how to make you confess.
God help you if you fall into their clutches. I liked the way that the tension is ratcheted up as the Gestapo investigation gets closer to the "heros" of the book.
Oct 10, joolz rated it liked it. They as individuals chose for themselves what they were prepared to risk dying for, which is why the original title has more meaning. Having said that, it's definitely worth reading as you get a vivid sense of the overwhelming culture of fear and paranoia at that time which made resistance so hard and explains why so many good people felt powerless. It makes you realise just how brave the Hampels were.
Think I'll find more books by Fallada and hope they have a different translator.
Set in the sick society that existed in Germany during World War II Every Man Dies Alone recounts the efforts of a humble working-class couple to resist the crushing evil all about them. Their resistance is crude, small, and futile; and for it they pay with their lives. Unfortunately the characters in this book are a bit crude, small, and futile as well — at times I felt as though I were watching an episode of Hogan's Heroes gone off its antidepressants.
Villains were invariably ugly, and flawed Set in the sick society that existed in Germany during World War II Every Man Dies Alone recounts the efforts of a humble working-class couple to resist the crushing evil all about them. Villains were invariably ugly, and flawed: None showed the least glimmer of the crooked intelligence often possessed by criminals, the sort so well portrayed on The Wire.
Fallada desperately needed to put to word the moral collapse of his society; sadly, his need outreached his talent, and despite the urgency of his task the characters he presents are beyond his comprehension. Still, what a pile of shit to have lived through such a terrible time.
Hell of a turd to polish into some kind of art. This takes takes the form of inspector Escherich, who is mapping the position of every card with the aim of pinning down the "criminals". Although the postcards aren't really successful, because the population is so terrified that they hand them straight to the Gestapo, or destroy them, the cards offend the authorities and the case becomes serious and failure to solve it is not an option and it's just a matter of time before the Quangels become guests of the hellhole that is the Gestapo prison system and then it becomes a question of not will they survive, but how they die.
Alone in Berlin was originally called Every Man Dies Alone and was based on the true story of Otto and Elise Hampel a working class couple from Berlin, who came up with the idea of leaving postcards around their city denouncing Hitler and his regime. Hans Fallada was given the Hampel's Gestapo files by Johannes Becher, a writer friend of Fallada's, who was president of the cultural organization established by the Soviet military administration in the Soviet sector, with the aim of creating a new anti-fascist culture.
Sometimes you pick up a book that so engrosses you, that despite it's subject matter you cannot leave it alone. You know that there will be no traditional happy ending for Otto and Anna Quangel, that respect for humanity is not high on the Gestapo's list of priorities, that it is when and not if they are caught and then that they will face every form of torture from humiliation to being treated like a rag doll in the mouth of a rabid dog.
None of this matters, or more accurately despite all of it, this book is beautiful, a quiet book of common decency, that reaches beyond the subject matter to reach a grandeur that, although of a tragic nature, still lights up bright enough to shine through the deepest of hellholes and to depict in letters large enough to be seen from the stars stating that despite all evidence to the contrary the human spirit and decency is never ever totally destroyed.
You realise that even the smallest things can make a difference and no matter who you are you can make your own stand.
Read my full www. Highly recommended.The film received a score of 52 on the critical aggregator website Metacritic , indicating "mixed or average reviews". He told his family that he had written "a great novel". Close X. But what a story! Thank you for signing up to the Penguin Newsletter. Learn about new offers and get more deals by joining our newsletter. This takes takes the form of inspector Escherich, who is mapping the position of every card with the aim of pinning down the "criminals".
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