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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  13,386 ratings  ·  851 reviews
Obra impressionante cujo pano de fundo é uma probabilidade histórica: os nazis ganham a guerra. A acção situa-se na Alemanha dos anos sessenta, quando uma série de crimes levanta suspeitas a um oficial da polícia de investigação. Por entre os meandros de uma sociedade hermética, fechada em torno do seu líder carismático, Hitler, o protagonista vai seguindo as pistas que o...more
Paperback, 378 pages
Published 1993 by Bertrand Editora (first published 1992)
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I’ve never read a book that more starkly highlighted for me how thankful the good people of the world should be that the allies won World War II. While my final rating was a somewhat subdued 3 stars, there are parts of this story that I found extremely compelling.


Welcome to a very dark future...

It's 1964, and all of Germany is preparing to celebrate Adolf Shitler’s 75th birthday. As part of this national event, the President of the United States, Joseph P. Kennedy...more
Jason Verber
A murder in 1960s Nazi Germany draws one Berlin detective into a greater mystery than he could have ever imagined. Or could he?

The great thing about Fatherland is that Robert Harris doesn't try to do too much with the counterfactual history. It's definitely there, of course, but the reader discovers it naturally as (fictional) historical details come up in the flow of the novel. There is no heavy-handed explanation of how this alternate history diverged from the history we know, no listing of...more
I chanced upon this book after reading Stephen's wonderful review while here on Goodreads.

Indeed, the blurb got me so hooked, that for the next four months I tried to hunt it down. But after futile visits to ALL the city bookstores with my boyfriend, who is also an avid reader, I finally gave up! Apparently, it was out of circulation. And right when I thought I would never be able lay my hands on it, I found a copy on sale on the Internet. A brand new 20th anniversary edition that too. So, I s...more
Again, as in the case of Simple Genius, this is the reason I don’t read more fiction. Even the historical fiction nature of the book, (Germany wins WWII, it’s a different world, yada, yada, yada—you can read more of the storyline in the reviews others have written) couldn’t save it for me.

I thought that both this book and Simple Genius had excellent premises but the stories failed to draw me in like a good Dean Koontz book.

Oh, and I am very literal. The book ends sort of like the movie Field...more
I am, and probably always will be, a sucker for alternate history. So a "What if the Germans hadn't lost WWII?" is right up my alley. The key point is that the Holocaust was never discovered or proven, because the Allies did not make it over from either east or west. What was different about history that this should be the case is never explained in the book, and it is not important.

Within this idea, it is simply a detective story. The bitter old detective gets assigned to a case he wasn't even...more
Now its very rare that I write negative thoughts on a book, but this is one of those posts, if you don't like reading that type of post then please take warning.

Fatherland is our school bookgroups next read - we're not a successful bookgroup at the moment being on our third book and never having had a meeting to discuss a book as yet. As soon as this book was decided on I was wary, the novel is an imagining of what the world would be like if Hitler had won the war. I read a book on exactly the s...more
Dick Edwards
This book would have us believe that, had the Nazi’s won WW2, the truth about the holocaust would have been unknown as late as 1964. The Wannsee Conference was dramatized on TV in the last couple of years (starring Kenneth Brannaugh). As I recall, there were a couple of the attendees who had serious reservations about the “final solution.” There were others who objected, and it just seems unlikely to me that the truth would never have surfaced. Charlie, the female American journalist, would seem...more
I'm glad I finally read this book. It has been on my to-read list for some time now.

This book has a possible answer for the question "What if Hitler won the war?". And it tells it from the viewpoint of a disgruntled, disillusioned police detective who whilst investigating a murder uncovers the biggest, closely guarded secret of the German Reich.

A well-written fast paced book it kept me always wanting to know more. And therein lies the issue I had with it. It just didn't tell me enough. I wante...more
I'm not sure why this book was set in 1964 in a fantasy of what the world might have been like if Hitler had won the war. There's little in it that couldn't have been easily plotted in, say, the real world of 1942. Still, the speculation is fun. We're surprised to learn that President Kennedy is still alive and running for re-election, and about 50 pages later we're surprised again to learn just which Kennedy this is. And I'm sure that if I were more familiar with the city plan of Berlin, I'd fi...more
When I think of great alternate history stories of the Germans winning World War II, I normally think of The Man in the High Castle or Indiana Jones (though not the same, the feeling of a Nazi Superpower is the same). Fatherland is a brilliant blend of a murder mystery mixed with known elements of the Nazi history in the war. The story follows a Kriminalpolizei detective Xavier March who is investigating a murder which leads him deeper into discovering the true and suppressed elements of the Naz...more
'Fatherland' is one of those novels that every writer dreams of – the book that changes everything. Robert Harris went from BBC reporter to world-recognised author in one jump. The well-appointed house where he now lives was 'bought with the proceeds of Fatherland.’ It began a series of successes that took in 'Enigma', a trilogy set in Ancient Rome and culminated in last year's 'The Ghost'. This success is based on a fiction sub genre, what you might call the fact-based thriller.

However, the fac...more
Apr 17, 2008 Hank rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: historial mystery buffs, reformed neonazis, uniform fetishists
Shelves: dystopian
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I read about this thriller in HHhH, another fine piece of historical fiction. Having seen the HBO movie, which was a hot mess despite starring Miranda Richardson and an avuncular Rutger Hauer, I had low expectations for the book. But I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the writing and the interlocking neatness of the plot. If nothing else, Fatherland is an object lesson in how screenplays, manacled as they are to visuals, compress and simplify a novel's narrative. Also, the book's endin...more
Carol Storm
As Nazi thrillers go, this one is barely passable. It's nowhere near as good as classics like THE ODESSA FILE by Frederick Forsyth, or THE EAGLE HAS LANDED by Jack Higgins, or even THE BERKUT by Joseph Heywood or THE MASTER SNIPER by Stephen Hunter.

I don't know why I disliked the hero March so much. Maybe it's because we kept hearing he was a U-Boat ace during the war but we never get any decent flashbacks. Maybe it's because he obviously hates his ex wife and his bratty little son. But mostly...more
Lance Greenfield
What an excellent book!

The version that I read was a twentieth anniversary edition of Robert Harris's breakthrough novel. In the forward, he explains how the concept of a work of fiction based on a world in which Germany had prevailed as victors in WWII. It came to him, in the eighties, when he was researching for a non-fiction book about Hitler's forged diaries. Consequently there is a lot of factual basis to the story. But it was written almost by accident.

Fatherland is enacted in the sixties...more
Arun Divakar
If there is one thing that i take away from this book then it is the atmosphere the author creates. Fatherland, simply put is a well crafted thriller in the lines of the ludlum/forsyth thrillers of yore sans the blood and gore. Interestingly enough I had given up my interest on political thrillers until this tale gave me a fresh view.

While studying the history of WWII, any over imaginative mind would ponder the question : "What would have happened had Germany won the war ? ". It could have been...more
Kelanth, numquam risit ubi dracones vivunt
Questo libro mi è piaciuto davvero tanto!

E' una di quelle storie che ti prende e non ti lascia più andare, la ricostruzione storica mi è sembrata eccelsa, con le descrizioni puntuali e mai noiose dell'immaginaria Berlino capitale del mondo.

Un futuro che poteva essere altamente probabile ricostruito dall'autore in maniera impeccabile. In fondo la storia viene scritta dai vincitori e solitamente sono solo i piccoli episodi a decidere le guerre. Ho sempre amato le serie famose in America, soprattu...more
This is a book I've wanted to read for many years but it took Ryanair's rotweiller approach to baggage limits for me to finally read it in Poland on holiday this year. I was running out of material to read so I went out on a shopping trip to the centre of Wroclaw to reinforce my holiday-reading stock. And of all the books to buy in Poland, I can think of no other where the location is of such critical importance in amplifying the reading experience.

As most of you will know Fatherland, Robert Har...more
Michael Roy
One of the guilty pleasures I've just realised I enjoy is counter-factual history.

This is a quite remarkable book which led to a film adaptation (featuring The Hitcher himself Rutger Hauer and Miranda Richardson - Queenie in Blackadder II).

The premise is based on an alternative reality that the Nazis had not, in fact, been defeated in 1945 but been pacified by the Allies after subjugating most of Europe.

It's the mid 1960s and the holocaust has never come to light. The Nazi hierarchy are attem...more
Miroslav Mateev
I really enjoyed reading this book. The overall plot really reminded me of The Da Vinci Code - a whole lot of running all over, accompanied by a female helper, going to a secret swiss bank, tons of interesting facts. Maybe that's where Dan Brown got his inspiration. :D One thing though irritated me was the credibility of those interesting facts - I didn't know what to believe and what not. It the end of the book however it is said that the biographical details are correct up to 1942, which makes...more
From BBC Radio 4:
Adaptation of the English author's chilling novel set in a dystopian Hitler-led post-war Germany

A TV adaptation Fatherland (1994) was made based on this book, with Rutger Hauer, Miranda Richardson, Peter Vaughan.

Fatherland was my second foray into Robert Harris’ writings, the first having been Enigma (which I loved as well, despite finding it rather long-winded and hard to follow at times – unsurprising, I guess, for a book dealing with cryptography set during WWII).

But Fatherland – well, Fatherland was a completely different experience. I found it mesmerizing, in the same way a train headed towards a bridge that is sure to collapse under its weight is mesmerizing: you can sense the disaster drawing clo...more
Well written, well imagined alternative history as well as a smart, engaging mystery that actually packs a few smart surprises.

Germany 1964, but in this version of Germany, Hitler is still alive because Germany won the Second World War. The country controls a large chunk of Europe though it continues to battle it out with Russia for more Soviet territory. On the eve of Hitler's 75th birthday, Xavier March, a dedicated but not particularly beloved criminal investigator with Berlin's police force...more
I don't often read thrillers, but I am pleased that I read this one set in post-WW2 Germany. The setting of this book assumes that the Germans were the victors of WW2. The author creates a thoroughly credible atmosphere in his exciting book.
I thought this was good. It seemed a convincing portrayal of what Germany and the world might have been like with a German victory in WWII. And the mystery story set in this context was well done I thought.
I bogged. Good alternate history, but too slow and mournful
I never thought I wouldn't like a book by Mr. Harris. I really liked "Pompeii", "Imperium" and "The Ghost", the first two set at the time of the Roman Empire and the third about a ghostwriter for a modern English prime minister. This book I did not enjoy at all.

"Fatherland" imagines a world in which Nazi Germany is the victor in WWII. The time is the 1960s and the main protagonist, March, is a divorced SS policeman (all police are in the SS) who is "asocial". March is informed of this designatio...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The book leaves a lot to be desired as a standalone murder mystery or a book on alternate history. As a fusion, somehow it works well.

The murder story is usual. Good guys' hands are tied. Most of their apparent friends are not friends. Bad guys are identified quickly and powerful. Really bad guys do not even need to join the story. The gap between the two sides' strength is built so vast that the chase often turns hopeless and eventually uninteresting.

The alternate world is never sketched fully....more
I don't know how Harris came up with the idea to set a murder mystery in an alternate history where Germany won WW II but it worked. To be clear, the focus of this book isn't Germany winning the war so alt history fans who are looking for something along the lines of Harry Turtledove's Great War series might be dissappointed. The "what if" part of this tale is just the backdrop of the story.

Fatherland revolves around the investigation of the murder of a former WW II government official by a Germ...more
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Λέσχη Ανάγνωσης Κ...: 02.06.14 - Fatherland 1 7 Jun 10, 2014 12:11AM  
2014 Reading Chal...: Fatherland by Robert Harris 14 24 Oct 23, 2013 06:38PM  
  • SS-GB
  • In the Presence of Mine Enemies
  • The Iron Dream
  • Resurrection Day
  • 1862
  • Bring the Jubilee
  • Dirty Tricks
  • Silesian Station (John Russell, #2)
  • A Thousand Suns
  • March Violets (Bernard Gunther, #1)
  • Hitler Victorious: Eleven Stories of the German Victory in World War II
  • The Madman of Bergerac
  • Designated Targets (Axis of Time, #2)
  • The Poisoned Chocolates Case
  • The Alteration
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Robert Dennis Harris (born 7 March 1957 in Nottingham) is a best-selling English novelist. He is a former journalist and BBC TV reporter. He specialises in historical thrillers noted for their literary accomplishment. His books have been translated into some thirty languages...more
More about Robert Harris...
Pompeii Imperium: A Novel of Ancient Rome (Cicero, #1) Enigma The Ghost The Fear Index

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“A police state is a country run by criminals” 4 likes
“Down in the cellar the Gestapo were licensed to practice was the Ministry of Justice called ‘heightened interrogation’. The rules had been drawn up by civilised men in warm offices and they stipulated the presence of a doctor.” 3 likes
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