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Customer Reviews for

Every Man Dies Alone

Average Rating 4
( 82 )
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5 Star

(40)

4 Star

(18)

3 Star

(13)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(5)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 83 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 5
  • Posted May 25, 2010

    Wow.

    I was prompted to buy this book after reading a very provoking review by the NY Times. I am not disappointed in the least - I highly recommend this book to EVERYONE. Though this book is not a difficult read at all, it is spectacular on so many levels. First of all, the storyline is so original and refreshing. It's a story based on 2 real life people - an elderly German couple staging their own revolt against the Hitler occupation in the little way they can. The characters, from the silent Otto to the valiant Anna, the complex inspector, even to the losers like Borkhausen and Kluge, they are SO developed. The plot was so believable, and other than a good read it's an enlightening picture of the German civil society that hid behind the militant Germany of its time. The ultimate message isn't patronizing, but very real, and it will keep your brain humming long after you've read the last page. I recommend this to all.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 24, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Last Word

    This is an extraordinary book. I suppose you would classify it as historical fiction. The story is loosely based on a true occurrence in Nazi controlled Berlin during World War II. A middle aged couple, the Quangels, learn of the death of their only son in the war. The usually staid husband, Otto, is so full of grief and anger at the government for taking his son from him, that he hatches a plan, with the at first, reluctant help of his wife, Anna, to speak out against the Nazis. They decide to express their grievances on postcards and drop them in high traffic areas of the city so no one will be able to connect them with the subversive notes. This may sound like a very innocuous way to protest their feelings, but in Berlin at this time to partake in such seditious writing was punishable by death. The story flows nicely, being neither preachy nor pedantic. The lives of the Quangels hang for over a year on the words they laboriously print on their postcards. Each knows the other is in constant danger as long as a card is in their possession. Yet each is willing to give their life as the mere act of defiance has brought them a closeness and bond that has not been present before. Hans Fallada, the author, nicely balances the lives of this couple with many other elements of German society at the time. Petty crooks an criminals are contrasted with the Nazi faithful. Seemingly innocent people, who are just trying to live their lives in peace are contrasted with the vultures of society who prey on the weak and unprepared. A very moving story which can be enjoyed on many levels.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    Resistance in Nazi Germany

    I've read many historical works dealing with the Third Reich. None the less this novel, based on real events, brings home the underlying brutality of this regime to its own citizens more forcefully than any work of pure history that I've read. The sheer pleasure in dispensing pain and suffering characteristic of the minions of this state is convincingly demonstrated as the events of this tale unfold. The resistance of this very common couple is both banal and heroic at the same time. Perhaps that is what gives this work a convincing patina of realism.
    I highly recommend this novel.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 14, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Dark and Stormy Nights

    This is a book which I happened upon by chance, and I feel grateful that fate allowed me the honor of reading it. Hans Fallada captures the hopelessness of Nazi Berlin, bringing us into the lives of everyday people caught up in something too big for any one individual. Fear rules everyday life as the privileged lord it over the rank and file, and Fallada takes us into the darkest hearts of modern man. Some keep trying to hold onto some slight remainder of their soul in a battle that can't be won, and it is these stories that grip the reader and force a look into one's own soul.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 26, 2010

    Highly Recommended

    This is an extraordinary book loosely based on a true story. It takes place in Berlin during the Nazi reign. If this time in history interests you, then this is a must read.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 21, 2012

    This is a superb novel of "resistance," in this case a

    This is a superb novel of "resistance," in this case a middle-aged couple's resistance to Nazism after their son dies in the German army. Though the resolution is arguably depressing--their battle can't help but lose--the novel is not pessimistic, but spun through with their determination to do what seems best to them. First rate.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    Cale

    *I nod* "Go to safe result three"

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 3, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    What Would I do?

    Every Man Dies Alone by Hans Fal­lada is a fic­tional 1947 book describ­ing the life in Ger­many under the Third Reich. The book’s title is actually Alone in Berlin.

    Otto and Anna Quan­gel receive the worst news par­ents can get – their only son died in the war. Feel­ing frus­trated against the Nazi machine they decide that they must act in defi­ance. How­ever, act­ing in defi­ance is a sure death sentence.

    Together they write and dis­trib­ute post­cards which call for action against the Reich. They man­age to allude the police for two years think­ing they are mak­ing a difference.

    Every Man Dies Alone by Hans Fal­lada tells the sim­ple truth in min­i­mal, yet descrip­tive prose. The book, it seems, is writ­ten from the edge of san­ity by a man who knows what suf­fer­ing is.

    The author whose real name is Rudolf Wil­helm Adolf Ditzen (his nom de plume is a com­bi­na­tion of Grimm Fairy Tale char­ac­ters), a drug addict and bril­liant nov­el­ist, who spent much of World War II in a Nazi insane asy­lum. He used the pre­text of writ­ing an anti-Semitic novel for the Nazi’s pro­pa­ganda min­is­ter Joseph Goebbels to get pref­er­en­tial treat­ment.
    The novel was never written.

    The book is based on the true story of Otto and Elise Ham­pel, two mid­dle aged work­ers who actively engaged in under­min­ing the Third Reich. Their cru­sade included writ­ing hun­dreds of post cards against Hitler and his cronies leav­ing them all over Berlin. The cam­paign wasn’t very suc­cess­ful as most of the post­cards, when found, were imme­di­ately turned over to the Gestapo but it did embar­rass author­i­ties for two years.

    The novel that tells of the post­card cam­paign but also about the larger pic­ture in Berlin, or more specif­i­cally the occu­pants of 55 Jablon­ski Strasse. The building’s occu­pants include the elderly Mrs. Rosen­thal (the last Jew), a judge, a post office worker and her no-good ex-husband who has a break­down after real­iz­ing what her heroic son really does in the SS, a gov­ern­ment snitch and his pros­ti­tute wife and a fam­ily of offi­cial Nazis.

    Fal­lada intro­duces the reader to a world where fear and ter­ror rule and the dread of being snitched upon is on everyone’s mind. The char­ac­ters are com­plex, well writ­ten and three dimen­sional. The heroes and vil­lains in this novel are shown with all shades of gray. Fal­lada just tells a story as hon­estly as pos­si­ble with­out col­or­ing it in false shades.

    Otto Quan­gel, the pro­tag­o­nist, is not a very nice man, he doesn’t like his neigh­bors or to talk to peo­ple, he doesn’t inter­act with his under­lings at work and doesn’t like to visit rel­a­tives. Otto only loves his wife Anna, even his son he only loves through her, but some­times he can­not dis­play his affec­tion.
    Not because he doesn’t want, but because he can’t. That’s just the per­son Otto Quan­gel is.

    What I loved about the s

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2011

    Very good read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2010

    Awesome book! A must-read!

    Awesome book! Very interesting story based on a real event!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    Fred

    She is not worth this. * leaves*

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    Zack

    Iles and takes out uhhh forgot the name sirry uhhh he takes out his sword touches tbe tip shtp good

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    Mastar

    What? Oh honey u r to young

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2012

    Difficult to read -- translation from the German language was not helpful

    Sorry, I was very disappointed in this book and did not finish it - gave it to our local library for their book sale.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted August 8, 2009

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    Posted November 5, 2010

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    Posted May 26, 2009

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    Posted July 30, 2011

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    Posted February 9, 2012

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    Posted December 22, 2009

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 83 Customer Reviews
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