Wednesday, June 24, 2015
"It's always the same...once you are liberated...you ask...who you are."
It tells of actions in Munich, Germany in 1945. Capt.Harry Kaspar, U.S.Army, is appointed military leader of Heimgau, a Bavarian town. Upon arriving at his assignment and with plans of the good he would be doing, he finds three men on the road, recently killed. Upon entering the town, he meets Maj.Robertson Membre who is also assigned as MG (Military Governor). Since Membre's orders come from Frankfort, it's a higher command and they take preference.
As a consolation, Member assigned Kaspar as Public Safety, he is to be the acting police chief.
The story details the power of the conqueror, Germany is defeated and the to the victor belongs the spoils.
Harry goes about his work and finds a good German man, Herr Winkl, a former policeman, to be his assistant. With all the good intentions, Harry is stymied by Membre and a Col. Spanner who has his own plan.
We see the corruption and the few who want to do something about it. It is interesting to see some of the activities at the end of the war such as the prisoners and soldiers coming home and wanting their old homes. It is also to see the few Jewish survivors who have so little but deserve more.
The bulk of the novel tells of Harry and his attempt to prevent the small town from turning to a corrupt area and criminals such as the man, Jenke, a convict, turned S.A. thug appointed to a new position of authority.
There is a romantic side as Harry meets Katrina who is well described and someone the reader will want to succeed with what she has in mind for herself and a number of Jewish friends.
There is a great deal to be considered in the story such as corruption, greed and how war can affect various people and communities.