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Alene i Berlin by Hans Fallada
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Alene i Berlin (original 1947; edition 1947)

by Hans Fallada, Jacob Jonia (Translator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,1971132,953 (4.2)251
Member:2810michael
Title:Alene i Berlin
Authors:Hans Fallada
Other authors:Jacob Jonia (Translator)
Info:Kbh. : People's Press, 2012.
Collections:Your library, 2012 (inactive)
Rating:*****
Tags:Historie, Nazisme, Diktatur, 2. verdenskrig, Modstandskamp, 1940-1949, Berlin, Tyskland, Tysk litteratur, Skrevet 1940-1949, Roman

Work details

Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada (1947)

  1. 81
    The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (meggyweg)
    meggyweg: Ordinary Germans during the Holocaust and World War II.
  2. 50
    Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman (chrisharpe)
    chrisharpe: Both are books about individuals under repressive regimes, set during WWII, by authors who lived through the circumstances they write about. Although both works are "fiction", the authority of each writer is plainly stamped on each novel. The subject matter may be grim, and the detail uncompromising, but the characters' humanity shines through to make these uplifting reads.… (more)
  3. 30
    A Woman in Berlin: Eight Weeks in the Conquered City: A Diary by Marta Hillers (2810michael)
  4. 20
    The Kindly Ones by Jonathan Littell (Torikton)
  5. 20
    Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler (chrisharpe)
  6. 20
    In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin by Erik Larson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: If you found In the Garden of Beasts moving and want to read fiction about the Third Reich, try Every Man Dies Alone, a haunting novel based on actual events surrounding a couple that attempted to undermine the Nazi regime.
  7. 10
    The Forests of the Night by Jean-Louis Curtis (Stbalbach)
  8. 10
    Mendelssohn is on the Roof by Jiří Weil (meggyweg)
  9. 10
    Allesbehalve een held : roman by Rudolf Lorenzen (gust)
  10. 00
    The 43 Group: Untold Story of Their Fight Against Fascism by Morris Beckman (abclaret)
  11. 00
    The Boy Who Dared by Susan Campbell Bartoletti (sleepykid00)
    sleepykid00: Another book about civilians going against the Nazi regime during WWII
  12. 00
    The Invention of Curried Sausage by Uwe Timm (meggyweg)
  13. 00
    Wer übrig bleibt, hat recht by Richard Birkefeld (2810michael)
  14. 00
    The Ministry of Special Cases by Nathan Englander (jayne_charles)
    jayne_charles: Different countries, different times, but both books tell of ordinary people battling against a powerful regime
  15. 00
    The Postmistress by Sarah Blake (generalkala)
  16. 00
    Hotel Berlin 1943 by Vicki Baum (1Owlette)
  17. 00
    History by Elsa Morante (marieke54)
  18. 01
    Cold Angel: Murder in Berlin--1949 by Horst Bosetzky (charl08)
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» See also 251 mentions

English (93)  Dutch (7)  Catalan (3)  French (2)  German (2)  Hebrew (2)  Spanish (1)  Norwegian (1)  Italian (1)  Swedish (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (114)
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
Review: Every Man Dies Alone by Hans Fallada.

An outstanding book based on a true story. I enjoyed the story because there were few characters and the ones Hans Fallada focused on were described with emotions and they were followed through to the end. I had only one question when I was nearing the end of the book and it was answered on the very last pages.

“But we don’t want to end this book with death, dedicated as it is to life, invincible life, life always triumphing over humiliation and tears, over misery and death.”____
(I’m not sure if Hans quoted this or if it was Geoff Wilkes.)

So, I read the answer to my question after this statement was written. I wondered what happened to Eve the postal carrier and Kuno the delinquent teenager. I think leaving this scene for last gave this book a brilliant ending.

The book is mainly about Otto and Anna Quangle, based on a true story of a couple in Berlin during World War II Germany. These two people were remarkable in every sort of way. With two sons in the war, the couple was living on rations, having a curfew to abide by, house searches, and the Gestapo watching every move they made.

The story goes on about the death of one of their sons in the war. This led to their questioning the Nazi regime and Hitler himself. They decided to become considerately disobedient from that moment on. Through the use of small, handwritten postcards Otto printed words against the Hitler and the Nazi party then he an Anna dropped the cards in certain locations around Berlin. To them it was a small act but at least they tried to stand up against a strong leader of Germany with little fear and for their son. They were proven untouchable and became a thorn in the Gestapo’s side for over four years.

The story has so much to offer. Hans Fallada created a vision and picture of wartime in Berlin that was real, relevant, and intimidating. It was a great read…..Highly recommendable.
( )
  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
--Alone In Berlin

Afterword
The True Story Behind 'Alone In Berlin' and the Gestapo File
( )
  E.P.G | May 30, 2016 |
The fact that this story is based on the actions and real lives of a couple in Nazi Germany make it especially compelling. Additionally, the realization that it was written in only 24 days is astounding!
One Shelfari reviewer mentioned having wished the background to the story was in a foreword to the book and not an afterword. I would suggest going to the back of the book and reading the portion titled "The True Story Behind Every Man Dies Alone". Of course this will tell you what ultimately happens to the couple in question, though it's quite easy to guess that based on the title of the book, the circumstances in which they find themselves and the actions they take. I think it's worth the "spoiler" factor because it really makes you think about what incredible risks they take - and they know it.
Whether or not you wish to read the afterword before reading the book depends on if you are okay with reading "spoliers" about the secondary characters.
Definitely a page turner! And like so many excellent books, poses many quesitons that will have you thinking for a long time. Primary among them is, "What would I have done?"
( )
  KylaS | Feb 18, 2016 |
My second Fallada, this was not the grimly compelling freefall into darkness that The Drinker was, but a good read in its own right, offering an assortment of captivating characters trying (and sometimes failing) to hold onto their humanity as they make their way across the brutal landscape of Nazi Germany. It asks the question: is an act heroic even if ineffectual?
"And don't you regret it? Aren't you sorry to lose your life over a stupid stunt like that?
Quangel cast a sharp glare at the lawyer, his proud, old, tough bird-glare. "At least I stayed decent," he said. "I didn't participate."

There is much to recommend this book...not least of all, the chilling portrayal of "Karlchen the dog." ( )
  bibleblaster | Jan 23, 2016 |
Long and tedious at times, however, great writing. ( )
  Judy_Ryfinski | Jan 20, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
Every Man Dies Alone is a good book, a readable, suspense-driven novel from an author who a) knew what he was doing when it came to writing commercial fiction, and b) had lived through, and so knew intimately, the period he was writing about. This is an extraordinary combination. I hesitate to use a word like "serendipity," but cruelly enough, that's exactly what it was.
added by MidnightDreamer | editGlobe and mail (Jul 30, 2009)
 
To read “Every Man Dies Alone,” Fallada’s testament to the darkest years of the 20th century, is to be accompanied by a wise, somber ghost who grips your shoulder and whispers into your ear: “This is how it was. This is what happened.”
 

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hans Falladaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Coisson, ClaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hofmann, MichaelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mooij, A.Th.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
First words
The postwoman Eva Kluge slowly climbs the steps of 55 Jablonski Strasse.
Quotations
He might be right: whether their act was big or small, no one could risk more than his life. Each according to his strength and abilities, but the main thing was, you fought back.
"What did you expect anyway, Quangel? You, an ordinary worker, taking on the Fuhrer, who is backed by the Party, the Wehrmacht, the SS, the SA?...It's ludicrous! You must have known you had no chance! It's a gnat against an elephant. I don't understand it, a sensible man like you!"

"No, and you will never understand it, either. It doesn't matter it one man fights or ten thousand; if the one man sees he has no option but to fight, then he will fight, whether he has others on his side or not. I had to fight, and given the chance I would do it again. Only I would do it very differently."
"Who can say? At least you opposed evil. You weren't corrupted..."

"Yes, and then they kill us, and what good did our resistance do?"

"Well, it will have helped us to feel that we behaved decently till the end... As it was, we all acted alone, we were caught alone, and every one of us will have to die alone. But that doesn't mean that we are alone, Quangel, or that our death will be in vain..."
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Alone in Berlin (UK - 2009) - Every Man Dies Alone (US - 2009) - Jeder stirbt für sich allein (DE - 1947)
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"Berlin, 1940, and the city is filled with fear. At the house on 55 Jablonski Strasse, its various occupants try to live under Nazi rule in their different ways: the bullying Hitler loyalists the Persickes, the retired judge Fromm and the unassuming couple Otto and Anna Quangel. Then the Quangels receive the news that their beloved son has been killed fighting in France. Shocked out of their quiet existence, they begin a silent campaign of defiance, and a deadly game of cat and mouse develops between the Quangels and the ambitious Gestapo inspector Escherich. When petty criminals Kluge and Borkhausen also become involved, deception, betrayal and murder ensue, tightening the noose around the Quangels' necks ..."--Publisher's description.… (more)

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