This well-researched novel covers in great detail life in Berlin from just before the Russian invasion until after the Nuremberg Trials. Our protagonist, Hannah Muller, a Bauhaus artist, witnesses first-hand the last minute desperation of the Nazis in falling Berlin and the horrors of the Russian invasion. Subsequently the book addresses the de-Nazification of Germany, and tries to ascertain who initiated the plans behind Hitler’s Holocaust ambitions.
The author has done an excellent job of illustrating the manifold changes for the occupants of Berlin as well as the complexity of post-war Germany and its politics. Although familiar with the subject matter, I found plenty of fascinating new facts and some additional aspects to the era I hadn’t come across.
As a work of fiction, however, the characters didn’t engage me as much as I would have liked, and the book, at least at times, felt more like an illustrated documentary than a gripping novel. That said, I’d definitely call it a book worth reading for its informative value.