Shadow and Light
Hard-boiled chief inspector Nikolai Hoffner thinks he has seen all the dirt that 1927 Berlin has to offer until he is called to investigate a film executive’s apparent suicide in his office bathtub. The body leads to a missing actress and a cache of unusual films. His uncertain allies are a beautiful American talent scout named Leni, his youngest son who has dropped out of school to work at the studio, and crime syndicate boss Alby Pimm. But are they any match for the rising Nazi party, led by Joseph Goebbels and his assistant—Hoffner’s other son? The trail leads to a dead accountant, a frightened electrical engineer, a powerful industrialist, director Fritz Lang, his wife Thea von Harbou, and a few secrets that are worth killing anyone for—including a police inspector with no one left to trust.
Hoffner’s emotional remoteness makes his eventual attachments even more heartbreaking. Fans of Philip Kerr will love another hard-boiled look at a meticulously researched and densely plotted book that shows the chaotic world of Berlin near the end of the Weimar Republic.