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Kindle Edition eBooks Details
  • B00K1HTFOY
  • 300 pages
  • $$2.99
No Man's Land

Adult; General Fiction (including literary and historical); (Market)

It was a beautiful dream; as compelling and just as any in history – yet unattainable. Realizing it meant overcoming entrenched ideological and political divisions that had split a city and the world for half a century. Then it happened; overnight and without warning. And nothing would ever be as it was before. Set in the divided city of Berlin just before the revolutions of 1989, continuing through the unexpected fall of the Wall and German reunification, No Man’s Land chronicles events as experienced by Richard, an expatriate American working an unsatisfying yet profitable job selling software for a small US firm. As the story unfolds, he meets an array of people on both sides of the Berlin Wall; among them are Katerina Weber, the only child of a funeral director hell-bent on living every moment to the fullest; Knut Heino, a theology student working toward priesthood in an effort to avoid a real job, (according to Knut, work is the consequence of original sin, therefore, he wanted nothing to do with it); and Klaus, a former East German boarder guard who went over the Wall and could never adjust to life in the West. Stranded in West Berlin without the means to leave, Klaus asks Richard for a favor that requires an excursion to the eastern city. There he meets Traudi Franzke, an idealistic young nurse. The relationship that ensues, separated from reality by the notorious concrete border, exposes hopes long since betrayed but clung to nevertheless. It is a relationship that outlasts the Wall and the tumult of German reunification until Traudi’s life is destroyed by a secret past, completing a journey from an age of ideology to The End of History.
Reviews
Califra’s novel, about an American working in West Berlin during the fall of the Berlin Wall, in 1989, presents a historically enlightening picture of a changing world. The narrative begins prior to Berlin’s reunification, with the heavily guarded Berlin Wall a daily symbol of the Cold War, both for those living in Communist East Berlin and those in democratic West Berlin. The narrator, Richard, has a high-income software marketing job. His eclectic social group includes a womanizing priest, a miserable doctoral student, a fine-art hustler, a former border guard who escaped to West Berlin, an East Berlin bartender, and two lovers, Kati and Traudi. Kati is a free-spirited, impulsive life force in an open marriage. Traudi is a nurse from East Berlin, “addicted” to Communist Party ideology. Richard and Traudi’s deepening relationship and his frequent visits to East Berlin stoke his intellect and provide a curious diversion, until an intimidating encounter with the police about his cross-border excursions. In the end, Richard discovers a shocking secret about Traudi. The main character in this impressive novel is the physically and ideologically divided city of Berlin, described with incandescent, highly descriptive detail. This is a stimulating page-turner about a major turning point in history. (BookLife)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00K1HTFOY/ref=s9_simh_bw_p351_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=AT

"Several weeks after finishing No Man’s Land, I find that the characters have stayed with me...The details of their everyday lives on both sides of the Wall are fascinating; it’s clear that the author was not only present but observing closely. His description of the night the Wall came down is particularly vivid. Highly recommended!"

"In reading the book, I felt the characters come alive and that for better or for worse they were my companions as I experienced an important, thrilling -- and for some tragic -- moment in the history of the 20th century as the established world order dissolved... I thoroughy enjoyed the book and heartily recommend it to anyone who is interested in that time and place."

"Germany is a fascinating and difficult place, and Califra's vivid, detailed reconstruction of life in the divided and then united Germanies is really, really interesting, and he raises many very human, insightful issues. This is a novel that history buffs will find fascinating, but anyone with an interest in post-War Europe or, indeed, the stresses cultural divides bring should read this book."

 

Formats
Kindle Edition eBooks Details
  • B00K1HTFOY
  • 300 pages
  • $$2.99

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