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The French Riviera, 1956: The invitation to dinner was not unexpected, though neither was it welcome. Erich Mielke, deputy head of the East German Stasi, has turned up in Nice, and he's not on holiday. An old and dangerous adversary, Mielke is calling in a debt. He intends that Bernie go to London and, with the vial of Thallium he now pushes across the table, poison a female agent they both have had dealings with.
But chance intervenes in the form of Friedrich Korsch, an old Kripo comrade now working for Stasi and probably there to make sure Bernie gets the job done. Bernie bolts for the German border. Traveling by night, holed up during the day, Bernie has plenty of downtime to recall the last time Korsch and he worked together.
The summer of 1939: At Hitler's mountaintop retreat in Obersalzberg, the body of a low-level bureaucrat has been found murdered. Bernie and Korsch are selected to run the case. They have one week to solve the murder - Hitler is due back then to celebrate his 50th birthday. Lucky Bernie: It's his reward for being Kripo's best homicide detective. He knows what a box he's in - millions have been spent to secure Obersalzberg. It would be a disaster if Hitler were to discover a shocking murder had been committed on the terrace of his own home. But the mountaintop is home to an elite Nazi community. It would be an even bigger disaster for Bernie if one of them was the murderer.
Two different eras: 1939 and 1956, 17 years apart. And yet not really apart, as the stunning climax will show when the two converge explosively.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Viv and Mike on 05-08-17
over-the-top narration became tedious
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)
it was satisfactory; I don't expect fairy-tale endings
Who would you have cast as narrator instead of John Lee?
not sure. I usually like John Lee but found his over-exaggerated archness tedious here
If this book were a movie would you go see it?
depends on the cast
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
By Nick B. on 04-24-17
Bernie Would Have Won
John Lee took some time hitting his stride in this one. Does he do Kerr's books about the English football club? I miss the idiosyncratic noir slang of the series opener, but plot and setting are solid here. My personal favorite of this series is the one with the Cuban Casino.
I love these books. If you are interested, I strongly recommend beginning at the beginning. This particular story might not grip a new listener, but the momentum of the series is far from spent. While not knocked over by this installment, I was excited to get it and will be excited for the next one.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful