The Second Objective
Mid-December 1944 was not a good time for the American forces fighting the Germans on the Franco-German borders. The seemingly defeated Germans unleashed a deadly surprise offensive on December 16, 1944, in a previously quiet sector in the Belgian Ardennes Forest. The German attack was a desperate gamble that included one incredibly daring plan—infiltrating English-speaking soldiers behind Allied lines to both disrupt Allied rear areas and to assassinate General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Allied commander-in-chief! Operation Greif is commanded by SS Obersturmbannführer Otto Skorzeny, the SS units are sent on their missions. One young German soldier, Bernie Oster, is placed in a unit under SS Hauptsturmführer Von Leinsdorf. The anti-Nazi Oster has no desire to play any part in a Nazi victory but must follow along or risk death at Von Leinsdorf’s hands.
Pursued by an American team led by civilian policeman Earl Grannit, the assassination team’s progress is certain to grab, and hold, the reader’s attention. The action is fast-paced, the story is exciting, and Mark Frost’s settings are believable. While Von Leinsdorf seems to be a stereotype of the Nazi thug found in hundreds of other World War II historical novels, Oster and Grannit are much better developed character types. The Second Objective is a fast-paced historical adventure about a relatively little-known event.