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Last Stop Klindenspiel by Marta Tandori

Last Stop Klindenspiel

by Marta Tandori

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Powerful post-war YA drama/adventure

A young adult novel set primarily in the Europe of the first decade post-World War II, Last Stop Klindenspiel is a very successful blend of historical fact and fiction. Although it was written as a backstory to an established series, it stands very well on its own merit as an independent story.

Katya Holberg's story is horrifyingly plausible, being based on the historical setting and reflecting similar experiences of real people. The fictional aspects are so intertwined with the context that it is actually difficult to separate the two. The story is realistic, avoiding overly convenient coincidences and not requiring much in the way of suspension of disbelief from the reader. This is in fact one of the things that made it difficult for me to read - it was too realistic, and therefore too disturbing.

Characterization is quite powerful, certainly well done in the main characters, and while some of the minor characters are glossed or two-dimensional, I felt it was above average in this genre. Marta Tandori's plot and pace were very good. Final editing was, if not quite there, nearly perfect. Overall I was impressed with the quality and pitch of the writing. Highly recommended for fans of this genre and setting.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for an honest and objective review. ( )
  DavidR1958 | Jul 4, 2017 |
*I received this book for an honest review from the author.*
Where do I begin? I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I was nervous at first reading this because I was thinking it would be a lot more history oriented, but the amount of history in the book was perfect. I enjoyed Marta Tandori’s writing style so very much. Everything flowed together so well and it kept me intrigued as I turned each page (well as I my Kindle turned the page).
Each and every paragraph added more and more into the book. I do not think there was a paragraph that was there and had no importance. You know how in some books there are pages/chapters that are there just for fillers – not in Last Stop Klindenspiel. Each paragraph was perfect and I think that’s why I enjoyed this book so much. I learned so much throughout the first few chapters and I liked that. I didn’t have to wait for it to get good…it started off that way.
The book had me on my toes – I never knew where it was going to go. Surprise after surprise hidden among many of the pages (although I predicted one of them). There is loads of heart-break, struggle, angst, and death…but there is also love, desire, happiness, and relief. I loved how there were so many emotions throughout the book and it kept my heart going on so many roller-coasters.
I was on the fence about whether to rate the book with just 4.5 or move it on up to a five. The only read I wanted to bring it down is because I wanted more and the other books that go along with this book do not seem to give me the more that I want. But, then I thought, I am judging on this book and this book alone and I immediately chose the 5 stars. ( )
  erica_novelink | May 5, 2015 |
What a touching read! Katya went through so much in her life with her mother being a Norwegian and her father, a Nazi! Would she eventualy find peace? Who was Karel Bauer and Ivan Jaworski? What happened to all the stolen art and money? Were war criminals involved? After reading this, you will know all the answers! ( )
  lubazuck | Jan 30, 2015 |
Evil comes in many forms, and Kate Stanton has seen it all.

What happens to the Lebensborn Children, the product of Hitler’s perfect race after the war was over? Ask Katya Holberg, or I should say, Kate Stanton. Born to a beautiful Norwegian mother, Sonja, and Karl, a high ranking officer for the Third Reich, Katya’s life is destroyed the day the allies liberate the concentration camp that Katya’s father runs. Life is now a living hell, and one by one, Katya loses everything and everyone she loves tragically until she ends up a captive of Klindenspiel.

Katya has no idea what happened to her father; her mother died brutally, her body desecrated, after doing everything she could to make sure her daughters were safe, and her precious little sister Lilly, beaten to death before her eyes. Hoping to find safety living with her grandmother in Norway was a lost cause. To her grandmother’s neighbors, Katya represented evil, and threats were made against both their lives. Because of the acrobatic training Katya had received from her mother, her grandmother decides that the safest place for her is Klindenspiel, known to the public as the elite school for students gifted enough to be circus stars. To outsiders, the children are happy and well taken care of; but to Katya, it is not much better than the internment camp of times past. Even now she fears that there is no one in whom she can trust. Katya’s talent as a contortionist leads her to the top of class, making her the female star attraction, which puts in a position she wants nothing of. Afraid to trust anyone, what kind of future will Katya have, if any? Everyday a new evil knocks on her door, until the day her past crushes the door down.

This book is a great wake up call for today’s youth; my niece thinks the world is going to end because the battery died on her mp3 player. Though filled with horrific representations of what these children went through, it is no more graphic than Hunger Games, and I feel sends a much better message. Youth or adult – it is well worth the read. Look for the rest of the Kate Stanton series at Amazon. Great job, again, Marta Tandori!! ( )
  CarolTilson | Nov 11, 2014 |
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