I got We Germans from Netgalley for a fair and honest review
The reason I got this book We Germans to review, was the idea of the book Intrigued me, as some one who is interested in World War II, both in historical and fictional terms.
We Germans, asks the question that the grandchildren of the World War II Generation, of those that either fought for the allies or the axis, would like to as the members of the German armed forces, what was it like to fight for Hitler? if you did not share the ideology of the, NAZI party, but done in a slightly different way.
When the English teenager who grew up watching war films in the 80s, asks his grandfather what was it like to fight for the bad guys? At the time he did not answer him, but after he passed away they find a letter written to his grandson about his time in the war on the Eastern front.
The book itself is divided in to two sections which alternate between them throughout the book, the first is the letter from the granddad about the war and the second is the reaction to the letter of the grandson. In addition explaining the things that may not be known by the people who do not have the same cultural references as the two of them
The idea of We Germans appealed to me as an interesting take on the war novel and how a future descendant deals with their families past. As the books is split into two parts I will examine both parts individually. The story that the grandfather tells in his letter, felt that it used a number of tropes from war novels in general, however the other members of his grandfathers unit were well written, and felt like real people.
The second section of the story were the grandchild wrote his reactions to the letter at the start I felt it was, interesting and did a very good of explaining why he asked that letter, however it felt like that he loses interest in reading it as the letter goes on. However, this was never really explained, there was a conclusion at the end but it felt like one that he could have worked before reading the letter.
One of the things that the author did well was, the different writing styles of the grandfather and grandson, I knew which section of the book I was in, by the writing alone, this helped me as a reader to follow the book as it jumped from one time period to the other.
Alexander Starritt has written an interesting story and the idea felt like a good one, in a time of black and white opinions, were your are either on one side or the other, than this is a book, that can make the world just seem a little bit gray. I would recommend We Germans, for a book club read, for two reasons, the first being it is a fairly quick read and second there are a number of interesting topics for discussion that the book raises.
6 August 2020
Comment bellow on what question you would like to ask your grandparents.
Like or follow for similar content.