It's an incredibly interesting story about Germany in the Cold War form the POV of a teen. YAY! I read it specifically for that. I want to read more books about other countries, and everything about Germany for YA seems to be in WWII. While this isn't modern, of course, it's better than nothing. It was fascinating to see how strict and awful it was. Germany's divided by the Berlin Wall, and one side is all free, and the other sid ...more
When I received this novel in my last haul from Emma, I have to say the cover didn’t impress me. It looked like it was going to be action-packed and adventurous which is not my usual style. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Sektion 20 is far and beyond one of the best accounts of post-War Eastern-Bloc Germany I have ever read and I’ve studied German History at degree level. This story worked perfectly, clearly showed how lift in the Communist East was far from the idyll that they po ...more
Firstly, there is one thing that I wish I had done: I wish I had read Sektion 20 after I had visited Berlin, after I learnt more about The Cold War, the Stasi, and the idea behind the Berlin Wall, and the rest of the history being there where it all happened. After I became to know the city inside out like a resident of Berlin does. But I hadn’t. I read Sektion 20 fourteen days before I left for Europe, for Berlin. It would’ve been wholesomely better and I more connected if I had exper ...more
Mini-review originally posted on Nightjar's Jar of Books.
Set in East Berlin in the 1970s, this book follows Alex Ostermann, a rebellious teenager who falls afoul of the Stasi for the grave crime of having long hair and liking rock music. As you can probably tell from my tone there, I wasn’t really able to take it all that seriously, though it was quite interesting in its portrayal of life in East Berlin under the rule of the German Democratic Republic. I just find it hard to believe that the Sta...more
This was a new kind of read for me, apart from Between Shades of Grey I've never read anything based on any kind of war because it normally doesn't really appeal to me.
This was quite a good read for the most part. The problem for me though is that it doesn't completely keep me utterly engrossed in the story the whole way through. I only started to get into it around half way through even if exciting things happened throughout. It ...more
The main character dreams big, but at times I didn't feel as invested in his plight as I imagine the author would have liked. In fact, I believe I would have got more enjoyment out of the book had I been following his girlfriend Sophie as her story was of more interest.
That being said the research into this time, and the attitudes of the teenagers all felt authenti ...more
È il primo romanzo di Dowswell che leggo. La storia è OK ma l'atmosfera che l'autore riesce a creare è veramente soffocante. Non fidarsi di nessuno, attenti a ciò che si dice, uniformarsi al resto del mondo...