The Second Son: A Novel [NOOK Book]

Overview

An Intriguing Historical Thriller Set in the Barcelona of the Spanish Civil War


On the eve of Hitler's Olympics, Chief Inspector Nikolai Hoffner, a half Jew, has been forced out of the Kriminalpolizei. Luckily, Hoffner's focus is elsewhere. His son Georg is missing in Spain, swept up in the sudden outbreak of the civil war. He has already lost Sascha, his elder son, who is fully entrenched in the Nazi regime. But Georg is not what he appears ...

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The Second Son: A Novel

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Overview

An Intriguing Historical Thriller Set in the Barcelona of the Spanish Civil War


On the eve of Hitler's Olympics, Chief Inspector Nikolai Hoffner, a half Jew, has been forced out of the Kriminalpolizei. Luckily, Hoffner's focus is elsewhere. His son Georg is missing in Spain, swept up in the sudden outbreak of the civil war. He has already lost Sascha, his elder son, who is fully entrenched in the Nazi regime. But Georg is not what he appears to be, and when Hoffner discovers this, he is determined to save the one son he can.


The Second Son is the eagerly awaited final installment in Jonathan Rabb's Berlin trilogy, set between the two world wars. In Harper's Magazine, John Leonard called the first, Rosa, "a ghostly noir that could have been conspired at by Raymond Chandler and André Malraux." The second, Shadow and Light (2009), garnered rave reviews--in The Washington Post, Wendy Smith praised its "atmosphere" and "brilliantly plotted narrative." Now, nearly ten years after the events of Shadow and Light, Hoffner finds himself tossed into the chaos that is Spain-- where he quickly meets anarchists, Soviet and British secret agents, and a female doctor called Mila Pera--as he follows a trail of clues left by Georg.


In the spirit of Joseph Kanon and Alan Furst--whose Foreign Correspondent also took place in the mountains of Spain--Rabb delivers another atmospheric work, rich with his storytelling talent and historical expertise.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429994118
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 2/15/2011
  • Series: Detective Inspector Nikolai Hoffner, #3
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 442,523
  • File size: 331 KB

Meet the Author

Jonathan Rabb is the author of four previous novels: Shadow and Light, Rosa, The Overseer, and The Book of Q. He lives in Savannah, Georgia, with his wife and twin children.


Jonathan Rabb is the author of five novels: The Second Son, Shadow and Light, Rosa, The Overseer, and The Book of Q. He lives in Savannah, Georgia, with his wife and twin children.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

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(4)

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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 11, 2011

    Great read

    I didn't know much about the Spanish civil war and this novel was a great way to see inside that terrible time. The characters were really strong and I liked the surprises along the way. Rabb is a very good writer and I could see all of the places in Spain he described. This was my first time reading Rabb so I'm going to read the other books that come earlier in the trilogy.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 18, 2013

    More Than Just a Mystery

    This is a memorable book, more of a man's journey than a who-done-it. It is a good story, well told of a Berlin detective in 1936, who travels to Barcelona and then across Spain in search of his missing photographer son. It lacks the immediate tension of your ordinary triller or espionage story, but keeps you involved with the character's and the father's recognition of terrible choices he has created for himself. It is also a story of honest resilience and redemption.

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  • Posted March 26, 2011

    Great Book

    I saw an early version of the English edition. Beautifully written. I knew nothing about the Spanish civil war (shame on me) and this book was a marvel when it came to that. Jonathan Rabb is a wonderful storyteller and historian, and manages to combine the two in way I haven't seen for quite some time. I've already started the first in the trilogy.

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  • Posted March 18, 2011

    Favorite book so far this year

    I am a HUGE history buff and this is a time frame that I spend a lot of time reading about. I've read all of Alan Furst (amazing) and Philip Kerr (also amazing) and I think Jonathan Rabb is one the same level. The characters are very complex but he lets you get to know them. He really gets you to feel like you're in Spain during the war. I really couldn't put it down. I loved the first two books in the trilogy (Rosa and Shadow and Light) but I think this is the best of the three. Highly recommended.

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  • Posted December 13, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    exhilarating bittersweet between the world wars noir

    After years of dedicated police work, Berlin Chief Inspector Nikolai Hoffner is forced to quit the Kriminalpolizei. Some believe he lasted longer than a stinking half Jew should. Others will miss his professional diligent work.

    With no where to go in Hitler's Olympic Germany, Nikolai decides to search for his missing second son Georg; sadly he knows he has written off his oldest boy Sascha who salutes wholeheartedly the Nazis. Nikolai travels to Barcelona where the heat melts his bones while the Civil War has ignited as fascists, communists, anarchists and foreign agents compete in deadly combat. The former German cop fears his second son like his first son is ideologically trapped by one of the extremists.

    The third Hoffner between the world wars noir (see Rosa and Shadow and Light) is an exhilarating bittersweet thriller that brings to life Spain during the violent civil war. The story line is fast-paced from the moment Nikolai is downsized due to his religious heritage and never slows down although the climax is overly difficult to follow. Still fans will appreciate this entertaining historical as Nikolai prays he can save at least the soul of one of his offspring.

    Harriet Klausner

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    Posted May 30, 2011

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    Posted March 10, 2011

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    Posted February 13, 2011

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    Posted July 4, 2011

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    Posted February 25, 2012

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    Posted February 26, 2011

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