After nine novels, Bernie Gunther turns up again in war-time Nazi Germany solving mysteries, murders and other assorted questions, falling in love with a beautiful actress (the eponymous Lady) and moving in exalted circles, ranging from those of Goebbels to various generals. Bernie, who originally started out as a Berlin homicide detective, now is little more than an errand boy for the propaganda minister who covets the affections of the actress while designing to star her in a film.
The actress refuses to accept the role unless Goebbels finds her estranged father, supposedly somewhere in Croatia or Yugoslavia. So enter Bernie Gunther, who is sent to find her dad in an effort to sway her to Goebbels’ desires. But first he falls in love with her, spending a blissful night in her arms. The trip gives Bernie, an irreverent anti-Nazi, ample time to observes the cruelties and murderous results of the powers-that-be and their allies. And along the way, the role of “neutral” Switzerland and its setting for English, Russian and American spies, including Allen Dulles, who arranges o have Bernie kidnapped while delivering a Mercedes for a German general to a Swiss associate.
While there are mysteries and murders to solve, the detective seems to approach them almost off-handedly, like an afterthought. A saving grace in the novel is Bernie’s sense of humor and the sly comments he makes of the Nazis and their regime. It is worth reading the novel for these alone. In an afterward, the author promises Bernie will return next year in the 11th book in the series. It should be a pleasant addition and waited for patiently. (“The Other Side of Silence” is due out in late March, 2016.) Meanwhile, if one hasn’t read any of the previous novels, including this recommend tome, it would more than pleasantly fill the intervening time....Continua
The much-anticipated return of Bernie Gunther. A beautiful actress, a rising star of the giant German film company UFA, now controlled by the Propaganda Ministry. The very clever, very dangerous Propaganda Minister - close confidant of Hitler, an ambitious schemer and flagrant libertine. And Bernie Gunther, former Berlin homicide bull, now forced to do favours for Joseph Goebbels at the Propaganda Minister's command. This time, the favour is personal. And this time, nothing is what it seems. Set down amid the killing fields of Ustashe-controlled Croatia, Bernie finds himself in a world of mindless brutality where everyone has a hidden agenda. Perfect territory for a true cynic whose instinct is to trust no one....Continua