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Waiting for Robert Capa: A Novel

3.51  ·  Rating Details ·  331 Ratings  ·  59 Reviews
An extraordinary novel of love, war, and art, based on the turbulent real-life romance of legendary photojournalists Gerda Taro and Robert Capa

Artists, Jews, nonconformists, exiles. Gerta Pohorylle meets André Friedmann in Paris in 1935 and is drawn to his fierce dedication to justice, journalism, and the art of photography. Assuming new names, Gerda Taro and Robert Capa t
ebook, 208 pages
Published September 27th 2011 by Harper Perennial (first published 2009)
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Audra (Unabridged Chick)
Shamefully, I had no idea who Robert Capa and Gerda Taro were when I started this book, but I now feel possessive and proud and affectionate toward Gerda Taro and I dare anyone to read this and not feel the same. In 1935, Jewish refugees Gerda Pohorylle and André Friedmann meet in Paris; André is a photographer who books Gerda's friend as a model for advertising images. Gerda becomes interested in the art of photography; her friend predicts a romance.

The novel is told through Gerda Pohorylle (mo
Feb 26, 2013 Rachael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m not a lover of love stories, and this was no different in the sense that at times I was ready to skip ahead, notably at the sex scenes (I have no problem with them if they add something, but while some of these had a reason for being there, I don’t feel many of them did) and some of the descriptions of how they felt.

That said, the descriptions in general in the book are wonderful, and so well suited to a book about photographs, which we cannot see but must imagine, and a time period/places b
Sara Wyatt
Sep 26, 2016 Sara Wyatt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un libro verdaderamente maravilloso. Lo he disfrutado de principio a fin, y la caracterización de Taro y Capa me ha parecido maravillosa, desde los primeros capítulos en el París de principios de los 30 a la cruda Guerra Civil. Los últimos capítulos me han partido el corazón, y me han hecho adorar más (si cabe) a estos fotógrafos que llevan llamándome la atención tanto tiempo. En general, una lectura no muy densa, que engancha y, sobre todo, que representa maravillosamente a dos de los más brill ...more
Judith Starkston
Translation by Adriana V. Lopez

Waiting for Robert Capa is both a puzzling book and an alluring one. It contains gorgeous, vivid descriptions of life in Paris and Spain in the ‘30s. It has long philosophical musings on war and refugees and love and memory, which I found deeply compelling and thought provoking. The portrayal of the Spanish Civil War with its intellectuals and artists as well as its armies was tragic and moving. What I was never persuaded of was that this is a novel rather than a s
A lyrical, poetic prose homage to the first female war photo-journalist. Gerda Taro as she renamed herself, was the first women to die pursuing this role. Robert Capa was a name also invented by Gerda for business reasons and has become iconic. Their relationship is the primary story line set during the turbulent era that culminates in this book during the Spanish Civil war between the Republicans and Franco's Fascists.

I read the first third of this book in one sitting. It is captivating for a
Oct 17, 2011 Alison rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not what I expected.

I had trouble getting into this book, especially in the beginning. In the spirit of full disclosure, I was having a bit of Book ADD at the time I was reading this book, so my inability to become immersed in it may not have been the fault of Susana Fortes. I take much of the blame, and offer my apologies to Ms. Fortes.

That being said, the writing was not as compelling as the story itself - does that make sense? All the elements of a wonderful war-torn love affair were there -
Nina Rapsodia
Jan 17, 2016 Nina Rapsodia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Todo el mundo
Recommended to Nina by: Bicheando en la biblioteca
Shelves: borrowed, best-2013
Mi historia con este libro es curiosa. Lo descubrí a principios de este año cuando brujeaba en la ronda habitual a mi biblioteca universitaria. Pero por mi gran gana de prestar más libros de los que tengo tiempo de leer, tuve que devolverlo. Tiempo después volví a llevármelo para ahora si leerlo si o si. Me he sentido identificada. He llorado. He reído. Me ha encantado.

Esta es la historia de una reportera. Gerta Pohorylle, una de los miles de refugiados que llegaron a París de años años 30. Una
Gerda Taro was a pearl with no oyster in which to enfold herself.

She's the one "Waiting for Robert Capa," a Hungarian photographer named Andre who she coddled, loved, and turned into an international artistic product.

Taro herself was one of those strong and independent women in a time when her gender was allowed no such prerogative and those who chose to exercise it were left on the vine to dry and die.

"Waiting for Robert Capa," is the story of their brief, youthful, and productive love affair.
Sep 26, 2011 Diana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Waiting for Robert Capa is the story of photojournalists Andre Friedmann and Gerta Pohorylle, who later assume their more well known aliases, Robert Capa and Gerda Taro. Both are Jewish; Taro had relocated to Paris from Germany due to the Nazi regime and impending persecution of the Jews. There, she meets Capa and begins a business relationship with him that leads to a romantic companionship that extends into the Spanish Civil War until her death.

The premise of Waiting for Robert Capa captured m
Agnes Franczia
Dec 08, 2013 Agnes Franczia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a book I was looking forward to read for such a long time that it would have been an utter disappointment if it turned out to be not worth the wait. Fortunately, this was not the case. :)
As I heard, a lot of people started reading this book without any knowledge of Capa or the times he was working in or anything at all really. Well, I'm Hungarian and I was always fascinated by his work (even though I have never been a photography expert myself) and I also feel myself drawn to this era (
Aug 21, 2014 Penny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
I read this due to these real people appearing in the book The Perfume Garden. This is written in translation from the Spanish and reads at times like a documentary account of the two photographers Robert Capa and Gerda Taro. It is factual and detached from the actual war in some way - whilst telling you all about it. It has no sentimentality.

I found the account of the 2 characters detailed and interesting but this lacked somewhat for me as it switched from being a documentary account to a novel
Jan 16, 2013 Zuzana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Trocha historie nikoho nezabije. Tentokrát se jedná o historii trochu okrajovější - válečná fotografie, španělská občanská válka. Od krátkého příběhu nelze očekávat hluboký historický exkurz, ale úplným laikům to trochu otevře další obzory a znalci se setkají s hvězdou oboru z trochu jiného pohledu, než jaký přinášejí encyklopedie a oficiální životopisy.
Kdybych byla fanoušek novinářské fotografie, tak dám těch hvězdiček určitě víc. Spisovatelsky to žádnou velkou hodnotu nemá, příběh jako takový
May 08, 2015 Federica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sarà che la storia d'amore di Robert Capa e Gerda Taro è uno dei miei punti deboli, ma io ho amato questo libro. Descrizioni meravigliose, sembrava quasi rivivere la vicenda con loro. Adatto a chiunque, come me, ami le struggenti storie d'amore tormentate (bonus: ambientate durante la guerra).
Skuli Saeland
Heillandi söguleg frásaga af ævi tveggja landflótta gyðinga Gertu Pohorylle og André Friedmanns sem hittast á fjórða áratugnum í París. Þau verða ástfangin af hvort öðru og einnig af ljósmyndun sem verður ekki bara lífsviðurværi þeirra heldur ástríða. Þau hata fasisma og eru miklir vinstri menn og því halda þau til Spánar þegar borgarastyrjöldin hefst, fyrst sem stríðsfréttaritarar en taka síðar æ meiri þátt í stríðinu sjálfu vegna hugsjóna sinna. Þau sýna æ meiri dirfsku og hugrekki vegna ástrí ...more
Aug 11, 2015 L F rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful novel of one of the truly great love stories. Set during the Spanish a Civil War in the 1930s.
I first learned about Robert Capa and Gerda Taro in the non-fiction account of the Spanish Civil War THE HOLTEL FLORIDA. The characters are both war photo journalist, some of the first of their breed. They are fearless as they and many others rush to Spain to help spread the word of what was really happening in Spain. These two were the real deal. Young, attractive, willful expats w
Dec 29, 2012 Collin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The greatest love story ever told. The fiction of life, the work of art, and the immortality of influence. While Orwell fought and Hemmingway drank, Andre and Gerta opened the eyes of humanity.
Nov 06, 2014 Hermien rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks, jewish, wwi-ii
Before reading this book I had never heard of Gerda Taro or Robert Capa. It is an illuminating read set in an historically very interesting period.
Este libro me ha generado sensaciones contradictorias. Por un lado me parece que tiene lagunas, que el relato no está bien hilvanado, que tiene huecos en los saltos que dibuja. Por otro me ha apasionado descubrir el personaje de Gerda Taro, impresionante mujer, que como muchas otras ha quedado relegada de la fama en favor del ídolo que ella misma creo.

A pesar de la carencias evidentes, es un libro que merece la pena leer, para descubrir, que a veces, no es que detrás de un gran hombre exista un
Oct 10, 2015 Cristina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
...Il romanzo di Susana Fortes, spagnola, classe 1959, non è un brutto romanzo ma probabilmente non è il romanzo che mi aspettavo, la storia è forte, di quelle che vanno dritte al cuore perché hanno in loro la potenza della storia vera e la dolcezza delle più grandi storie d'amore, quelle che non sono mai banali, quegli incontri di anime che sono destinate a stare insieme, anche se poi si ritrovano a fare i conti con un destino beffardo. Tuttavia, questa grande potenza in nuce della tragica stor ...more
Sep 22, 2011 TC rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book looks like it will be one of those released to great critical acclaim, and translated for the big screen which I imagine will make a good film. However I found myself struggling to finish this book. For the plot please take a look at the description above.

I'm interested in photography but have to admit I hadn't heard of these photographers before so I wasn't sure how much of the book was a biography and how much was fictionalised. I read it expecting something that would be almost a h
I’m not sure if I was just not in the right mood for this book or if it just wasn’t the type of book for me in general, but I could not get attached to the characters, nor the plot. This is surprising given that I am a hobbyist photographer and have an interest in war stories. The descriptions of Paris and Spain didn’t even ring deep for me. The romance between Gerta and Andre was a roller coaster ride but the novel left out enough detail that I had a hard time following along. It felt like chun ...more
Jul 02, 2011 Minh rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
**Waiting for Robert Capa will be released Oct. 1, 2011 by HarperCollins**

Overall Rating: 3.3/5
PROS: WWII; historical fiction; tragic love story; sad endings (eff, sad ending always get to me)
CONS: Is this really a fiction novel, cuz it reads like non-fiction half of the time; the last line killed my entire mood; the relationship between the two characters sort of drained me
Future Movie Prospects?: Movie has already been set to be adapted by award-winning director Michael Mann (“Ali”, “Collatera
Oct 31, 2013 Telans rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

С 1955 года пресс-клуб США ежегодно вручает фотожурналистам престижную «Золотую медаль Роберта Капы» за лучшие фоторепортажи, сделанные с риском для жизни (очень часто – с фронтов многочисленных горячих точек нашей планеты). Годом ранее основоположник военной фотожурналистики Роберт Капа погиб во Вьетнаме в самом конце Индокитайской войны, подорвавшись на мине.

Наверное каждый так или иначе сталкивался с его военными снимками, не задумываясь об их авторстве возможно, ибо в наше время они стали по
José Luis Calvillo
Es excepcional que me decida por la lectura de autores todavía escasamente conocidos de novela histórica, no porque el subgénero literario no me atraiga sino porque habitualmente termino con el regusto de que no ha merecido la pena. Frecuentemente, al final, lo leído no acaba de ser una novela, tampoco una narración histórica y todo queda en un híbrido: “un quiero y no puedo”. Se promete la recreación de personajes de otro tiempo y se ofrece solo la epidermis descriptiva de unos hechos histórico ...more
El Segoviano
Oct 19, 2014 El Segoviano rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novela, c-2
Es una pena pero este libro le he leído hace relativamente poco, mas o menos un año, y no puedo acordarme de su contenido, lo que puede significar dos cosas o mi memoria se deteriora día a día o su contenido no fue lo suficientemente interesante para dejar alguna referencia o poso que me permitiera recordarlo de algún modo.
La autora escribe bien, he leído otros libros suyos, pero no soy capaz de situar en este momento el contenido del libro en mi memoria.
Lizzie Eldridge
Very interesting idea for a novel and a lot of thought, passion and research evidently went into the book. But unfortunately, for me, the writing tended to be overly melodramatic and, ultimately, the account of Capa and Gerda's lives became too romanticised. Although I did enjoy parts of the book - particularly when the action moved to Spain - I came away feeling disappointed as I felt that the realism of the subject matter was undermined by the less sophisticated writing style.
Valentina Hepburn
Aug 30, 2014 Valentina Hepburn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very intriguing true story about a German refugee, Gerta Taro and a Hungarian exile, Endre Friedmann. The story begins in 1935 Paris. They're both Jews, both artists in photo-journalism. So they are able to sell their photographs of the Spanish Civil War they invent a persona, Robert Capa. This a unique story, in essence a love story, beautifully written, not always easy to read, but a book worth exploring.
Francesca Barontini
Tre stelle e mezzo, questo sarebbe stato il giudizio corretto se avessi potuto. Non un capolavoro da quattro stelle, ma sicuramente una bella scrittura e sopratutto un buon lavoro fatto sopra un personaggio purtroppo poco conosciuto come Gerda Taro. Il libro va letto avendo a portata di mano le foto sia della Taro che di Capa che degli altri famosi fotografi dell'epoca. Viene voglia di approfondire e questo è sicuramente un merito.
Cheryl Lynn
I have read a book or 2 about Robert Capa and the other media bohemians of his time. They were a strong, driven group ...took dangerous chances with their lives....Capa did lose his life in Vietnam..... Taking photos there under "the American War" , as it was called in Vietnam.

Never a boring moment was to be tolerated...action all the many forms....
Jun 15, 2016 Elena rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

La primera vez que escuche los apellidos "Capa" y "Taro" fue en una canción (alt-j - Taro). Me gustó tanto la canción que me puse a investigar el significado de las letras y fue cuando descubrí que Robert Capa y Gerda Taro en verdad habían existido. Siempre me encantó su historia, sus vidas me parecen dignas de recordar. La labor que hicieron al documentar la guerra civil española fue enorme.

Fue asi que mi obesión por las vidas de Capa y Taro me trajeron a este libro. Me gustó. Me hubiera
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Susana Fortes (Pontevedra, Spain, 1959) graduated in Geography and History at the Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, and in American History from the Universidad de Barcelona. She has recently spent time in the USA, combining teaching Spanish in Louisiana and participating in university conferences at the Universidad Interestatal de San Francisco. She currently teaches at a secondary school in ...more
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“To photograph people is to obligate them in some way to face things they weren't expecting to.” 1 likes
“All that interior violence and complication to defend themselves from the very tenderness.” 1 likes
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