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Hitler's Peace

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  589 ratings  ·  67 reviews
A stunning World War II "what if" thriller in which the fate of Europe-and of its remaining 3 million Jews-hangs in the balance.

Autumn 1943. Since Stalingrad, Hitler has known that Germany cannot win the war. The upcoming Allied conference in Teheran will set the ground rules for their second front-and for the peace to come. Realizing that the unconditional surrender FDR
Hardcover, 464 pages
Published May 19th 2005 by Putnam Adult
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David Lowther
A load of thoroughly entertaining rubbish, the literary equivalent of Tarantino's brilliant movie Inglorious Basterds.

Philip Kerr is one of the very best writers of Nazi Germany stories, some set before the war, others during it and the rest after it. They all have one thing in common; the presence of champion cynic policeman Bernie Gunther. The main character in Hitler's Peace, Willard Mayer, is not Bernie but pretty tough, considering he's been seconded from his job as a philosophy teacher at
What if Adolf Hitler had offered the Allies a negotiated peace in 1943? That is the premise of Philip Kerr's Hitler's Peace; unfortunately, the novel doesn't live up to its fascinating premise. The main character is an insufferable womanizing know-it-all with none of the charm or sly wit of Kerr's great Berlin detective, Bernie Gunther. Moreover, Hitler's motivations for seeking peace after the debacle of Stalingrad are never fleshed out and whatever Kerr does posit doesn't seem very believable, ...more
Toni Osborne
I am a huge fan of this author since my introduction to the Bernie Gunther series some time ago. I simply could not stay there waiting for the next installment so why not backtrack and “Hitler’s Peace” became my preferred choice.

This is briskly paced and a sharp standalone spy thriller set in 1943 when Hitler and his advisors see that they are losing the war and unconditional surrender is out of the question. Hitler and his advisers then work on a secret plan to manipulate the Allies to turn th
After 2 chapters, I wanted to give it 4-stars, later I was giving 5-stars, but then, the last 3 chapters, well, I don't want to spoil it for anybody, let's just say I couldn't suspend disbelief any longer. Some of the things that happen here just could have happened, with intermediaries, but not with the main protagonists; and just too much is attributed to one obscure 3rd tier Oss analyst…
This being said, Kerr is topgun when it comes to research! What he doesn't know about nazi Germany, or WWII
Not really such great writing; but perfectly interesting. Hard to put up with novelization of these characters (I just had dinner with Adolf!), but I understand much is factual, so, on I go ... .
Turned out to be perfectly interesting. Three interesting plots going on, the "hero" becomes more and more interesting, and the places and people are certainly very interesting. Worthwhile. Very.
Basierend auf realen Geschehnissen (II. Weltkrieg, Schlacht bei Stalingrad, Treffen der Großen Drei) wird eine fiktive Story erzählt, die allgemein bekannte Tatsachen und Personen geschickt mit einbezieht. Dadurch entsteht beim Lesen immer mehr das Gefühl, es handle sich eher um eine Dokumentation in Romanform (was der Spannung zugute kommt) statt um einen rein fiktiven Spionagethriller. Aber wer weiß...
Die Story springt überwiegend zwischen deutscher und amerikanischer Seite hin und her und du
Author of the rightly celebrated Bernie Gunther World War II and Cold War novels, Philip Kerr turns to a stand-alone story on the possibility of what might have happened at the conference of "The Big 3" - Stalin, Roosevelt and the junior partner, Church - in 1943 in Teheran. Roosevelt has invited the book's "hero", philosophy professor Willard Mayer to travel to the conference as an interpreter, after having him compile a report on the (then) alleged Soviet massacre of 5,000 Polish soldiers, now ...more
Willard Mayer has the strangest luck. How many people get to dine with FDR, talk about the worries of life with Winston Churchill, annoy Joseph Stalin, and shake hands with Adolf Hitler? And this after they've been arrested several times for espionage given a string of bodies trailing behind them. Mayer's no murderer or spy, even if once in his impressionable youth he was a member of the Communist party and passed information to the Soviet intelligence service, the NKVD. The year is 1943, and Ma ...more
Laura Ashurst
First I have to say it is a well written book. It has surprises at the end. It was slow at first, then picked up later. It drew a unique picture of negotiations within Roosevelt's inner circle during WWII. Parts of it were quite realistic.

I just have to say I didn't like the hero. He was a cold hearted, intellectual snob.

The portrait of politics during WWII seemed quite real. However the hero's personal life was not true for me.
Jul 19, 2014 Ian rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ian by:
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Martin Jourdan
Philip Kerr a l'art d'inventer d'excellentes petites histoires -- avec du suspense, j'adore -- qui collent magnifiquement à la grande Histoire. Ici il ne met pas en scène son héros berlinois habituel, mais c'est aussi savoureux...
A narrativa até é fluente.
O problema é quando chega a 85% da obra e se torna necessário concluir a mesma.
É aí que o autor se espalha.
No entanto saliento a boa investigação histórica e a inserção de factos reais que ajudam a dar credibilidade e interesse
Irving Koppel

Mr.Kerr has written a work of fiction based upon things that might have happened that would have
changed the outcome of World WarII. It seemed that by 1943 the Germans were well aware that they
were going to lose the war. A desperate plan was devised to kill Churchill,Roosevelt,and Stalin at
the Teheran Conference in December of that year. The German army,the SS,the Luftwaffe are all involved in plots and counterplots. My major criticism would be that there are so many characters
involved that it
Philip Kerr, who knows his Germany and his WWII, tries his hand at a bit of alternative history making with this novel. Set at the time of the real Big 3 conference in Tehran, Kerr poses the delicious possibility that Hitler gets invited as well. A layered examination of the times and the fine art of duplicity and diplomacy, Kerr mixes fictional characters with real players and asks, slowly but surely, what if? What would it have taken and who might have agreed. Professor Mayer, a philosopher, O ...more
Christopher H.
This was an excellent piece of historical fiction. I'm coming to realize that Philip Kerr really does know how to spin a most believable yarn, and "Hitler's Peace" is truly a humdinger of a tale. Like his 'Bernie Gunther' novels, this book exhibits Kerr's superb abilities for character development and incredibly deft plotting. There's a real cinematographic feel--in a noir-ish kind of way--to this novel, and I think it would make one helluva great movie.
Philip Kuhn
I was surprised that it was that good. I read one of Kerr's other novels and did not finish it, but those were of the "detective noir" genre. I hate that crap. It doesn't interest me. This was historical fiction with a twist. It was very close to the actual facts of what happened, it turns out.
Judy Clarke
Not an easy read - all too likely plot is somewhat unsettling. Interesting twists throughout, particularly at end. Worthy neighbour to Bernie Gunther on library shelf.
Well, if only the sardonic Bernie Gunther had appeared in this book. But he doesn't and, while the premise is audacious, the way the narrative is split between a third person account by an historical character and a first person account by a fictional professor of philosophy seems labored and contrived.
Michael Twist
Kerr's ability to sprinkle literary references throughout the first two thirds of the novel added enjoyment to a fascinating piece of fiction that no doubt required countless hours of meticulous research. Utilizing his understanding of little known historical oddities surrounding the events leading up to the meeting of the Big Three, Kerr has provided a fast paced book which culminates with a fictitious dialogue that reveals himself as a master historian, psychologist, and even philosopher of so ...more
Surreal, but really entertaining. One view of history could have been very different.
Ian Robb
Unlike the Bernie Gunther series with is fiction, this is alternative history. It involves the German high command, with all the usual suspects, Hitler, Bormann, Gobbels, Von Ribbentrop, and Schellenburg realizing that WW2 cannot be won and trying to negotiate for peace. Willard Mayer, a philosopher, is chosen by Roosevelt as an interpreter. On the Allied side we meet Stalin and Churchill. There is a lot of verifiable history in this fiction and I really learned something about the German side. ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I like Phillip Kerr and had set this aside to read, just knowing it was NOT Bernie Gunther. But just having finished The Balkan Trilogy and not ready to slug w/ Harriet through another round of angst just yet, thought that I'd get an 'alternate view' of the war at this point through Kerr - his books are always so well researched.

Rewarded! Not only a clever interesting look at the under-belly of political machinations during this point (1943) in the war but a GOOD and neatly twisted tale of intri
I have long been a fan of Philip Kerr, but the pace of this book didn't really pick up until about half way through. While the descriptions and characterizations were rich and detailed, I found it slowed the story down some. That being said, I did not see the "speculative" twist near the end of this novel. I had to reread the paragraph or two where the least expected character does the least expected thing at the least expected place. Hope I haven't ruined it for anyone. I couldn't put the book ...more
An exceptional historical "What If...?" thriller, featuring a cast of "who's who" in World War II: Hitler, Stalin, FDR, Himmler, Bormann and philosopher professor Willard Mayer, a womanising OSS officer with a history of spying for the Russians prewar and a dab hand at quips and dry asides. The body count is high, the twists plausible, the dialogue crisp and the characters remind of Hollywood's Golden Age of wartime thrillers. I loved it to bits.
While this is a basically a thriller, Kerr makes a few thoughtful insights into what were the strategic drivers behind the actions of Churchill, FDR, Stalin and Hitler, and that these actions would not have been approved by their electorates or others who wanted to replace them.

A good yarn but this book also stands as a very strong piece of historical fiction which could just be classed as being an alternate view of history.
Kerr wrote the Berlin Noir trilogy, a big favorite of mine, this one is just as good. From Washington to London to Berlin and Tehran, this thriller moves a breakneck pace. Kerr is really good at drawing realistic characters, having them interact with historical characters, all with plot and setting underlining everything well. If you like Alan Furst's novels, you'll probably like this one.
Kerr has created a piece of historical fiction that tries to take the reader behind what happened at the meeting of the Big 3 (Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin) at Tehran. He cleverly suggests intrigues that might have gone on behind the scenes and leading up to the meeting. It's a fun read that mostly holds together. Not quite as good as his Berlin Trilogy, but very enjoyable.
Interesting WW2 speculative history thriller. American viewpoint character a cad and not very interesting; hard to understand why women throw themselves at this philosophy professor; so docking 1 star for that. He's no Bernie Gunther... nor is the German viewpoint character. Plot was good and moved right along. Historical figures portrayed well. Worth the read.
Iñaki Tofiño
It starts in quite confusing way but eventually every piece of the puzzle falls into place. Interesting mixture of real life and fiction, mixed with a philosophical debate about the nature of truth and its role in international politics and war personified by the protagonist, whose fate gives the answer (the only possible answer?) to the questions he poses.
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Kerr has published eleven novels under his full name and a children's series, Children of the Lamp, under the name P.B. Kerr.

More about Philip Kerr...
Berlin Noir: March Violets / The Pale Criminal / A German Requiem March Violets The One from the Other (Bernard Gunther, #4) Prague Fatale (Bernard Gunther, #8) Field Gray (Bernard Gunther, #7)

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