Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “HHhH” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  10,432 Ratings  ·  1,482 Reviews
Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich: o cérebro de Himmler se chama Heydrich. A sentença corrente entre os membros da SS permite vislumbrar os horrores vividos pela extinta Tchecoslováquia durante a ocupação nazista, quando o implacável chefe da Gestapo, Reinhard Heydrich, foi nomeado pelo Führer o “protetor” da Boêmia-Morávia, território incorporado ao III Reich durante a Segunda ...more
Paperback, 344 pages
Published April 5th 2012 by Companhia das Letras (first published 2009)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about HHhH, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about HHhH

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jeffrey Keeten
May 04, 2016 Jeffrey Keeten rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ww2
”This is what I think: inventing a character in order to understand historical facts is like fabricating evidence. Or rather, in the words of my brother-in-law, with whom I’ve discussed all this: It’s like planting false proof at a crime scene where the floor is already strewn with incriminating evidence.

 photo heydrich_zpsfyy8klq1.jpg
I don’t know how to describe him any other way except that he has a punchable face.

This is a book with a plot ensnared in the arduous process of conceiving a historical novel. Laurent Binet is
Let me tell you a story. A true story. A story that you might know, but only in passing.

This story took place in World War – II. To be exact, it was a mission. No, not a mission. Destiny, rather, of our heroes. Amongst numerous missions that were carried out in the War, this one should rank within the top 10 most important ones, in my opinion (And I have read about all the major ones).

So, let me tell you about this book.

Laurent Binet, the author, has named it HHhH.

What does "HHhH" mean?

It means
Cindy Knoke
I am addicted to reading about the history of WWII and I really wanted to like this book.
Binet's book however frustrated me. The constant insertion of the author into the text and his continuous use of the word "I" was incredibly distracting. Who was this book about precisely, the author or Heydrich? The purported topic, Heydrich was interesting, the author's pathos? Not so much.
His short chapter format consisting of 257 chapters, some of which were only a few sentences long, resulted in a cho
MJ Nicholls
Binet has written the world’s first (and please God the last) metafictional Nazi thriller. As one who baulks at the WW2 novel (how passé is “the war??”—been there, done that, babe), Binet’s self-commenting novel-about-a-novel is a refreshing addition to the legions of prize-winning tomes about lesser-known Nazis and atrocities. Heydrich is the topic—a high-ranking Nazi who could have been up there with Himmler and Goebbels on the mass-murdering-psychopaths-whose-names-are-forever-etched-into-his ...more
Το Άσχημο
Είναι κάτι πολύ παραπάνω από ιστορικό μυθιστόρημα. Ζωντανεύει την διαδικασία της ιστορικής έρευνας και συνάμα αναδεικνύει όλες εκείνες τις σκοτεινές λεπτομέρειες που κρύβονται πίσω από τα σπουδαιότερα ιστορικά γεγονότα. Βαθιά φιλοσοφημένο, χωρίς ωστόσο να κουράζει. Περιμένω πολλά αυτόν τον συγγραφέα στο μέλλον.
Jul 10, 2012 Hadrian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What is HHhH? Himmlers Hirn heisst Heydrich, or Himmler's brain is called Heydrich.

This acronym, as chilling as it was, was not the author's first choice - he would have preferred Operation Arthropoid, the name of the covert action which occupies the majority of the book. But it was rejected as sounding like a Robert Ludlum, when this is a more meditative and sardonic bit of historical fiction.

Of course history is not always so neat and clean as it is in thrillers. There are still missing piece
Jul 25, 2016 Panagiotis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To HHhH, το οποίο χάνοντας την αυθεντική του ευγλωττία στα ελληνικά μεταφράζεται Ο Χαίντριχ είναι ο Εγκέφαλος του Χίμλερ, είναι ένα βιβλίο γύρω από την απόπειρα δολοφονίας ενός σημαντικού προσώπου του ΓΡάιχ - του ξανθού κτήνους, του Χασάπη της Πράγας, του Ράινχαρντ Χάιντριχ, αρχηγού των μυστικών υπηρεσιών των Ναζί. Του Χάιντριχ από τον φερώνυμο τίτλο φυσικά. Ο υποψιασμένος αναγνώστης θα ξέρει λογικά πως δεν είναι ένα μυθιστόρημα. Είναι δηλαδή ιστορικό βιβλίο; Τα πράματα μάλλον δεν είναι τόσο απλ ...more
Jul 27, 2013 Tfitoby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tfitoby by: Daniel Juckes
Shelves: lit, translation
“This scene is not really useful, and on top of that I practically made it up. I don't think I'm going to keep it.”

No other quote from this wonderful piece of post-modern literature could quite as effectively capture the tone and style of the content. HHhH is two narratives in one, a piece of creative non-fiction telling the story of Operation Anthropoid - the plot to assassinate Reinhard Heydrich - alongside which runs the journal of the Czech professor obsessed with commemorating the brave men
Nikos Tsentemeidis
Συγκλονιστικό. Καταφέρνει πολύ απλά και ζωντανεύει την ιστορία. Διαβάζεται χωρίς ανάσα. Θα μπορούσε άνετα να διδάσκεται στα σχολεία.

"Η Ιστορία είναι η μόνη μοίρα που υπάρχει: μπορείς να την ξαναδιαβάσεις και να την ερμηνεύσεις όπως θες, μα δεν μπορείς να την ξαναγράψεις."
Jul 03, 2012 Dergrossest rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have had my fill of books about Nazis, but this clever little title was irresistible. And thank heaven it was since this story about the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich is absolutely brilliant. It was sort of a travelogue-type history in the manner of Tony Horowitz, although most of the travel in this book is through the author’s mind as he ruminates on the nature of historical biographies in general, wrestles with self-doubt as to whether he is up to the task of writing something original ...more
Sep 14, 2016 Margaret rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Margaret by: Violet, in her review of The Quest for Corvo.
HHhH, what kind of title is that for a book? Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, the publishers of the 2012 fine English translation (by Sam Taylor) of Laurent Binet’s prize-winning French novel must have known they had a problem on their hands, so the book flap begins by explaining that HHhH is an acronym for a saying, which translated from German means “Himmler’s brain is called Heydrich.” Reinhard Heydrich, aka “The Butcher of Prague” was targeted for assassination by Czechoslovakia’s government in e ...more
Ένα οπωσδήποτε ενδιαφέρον βιβλίο, ειδικά δεδομένου ότι ειναι το πρώτο του Binet.

Θετικά: Μαθαίνεις πολλά για την ιστορία της δολοφονίας του Χαιντριχ αλλά και γενικότερα της εποχής του Β' Παγκόσμιου Πολέμου στην Πραγα μεσω μιας καλής και απλής γραφής, χωρίς να κουράζει και να φορτώνει τον αναγνώστη με πολλές λεπτομέρειες τις οποίες δεν πρόκειται να συγκρατήσει. Επομένως είναι καλό για μη "επαΐοντες" της ιστορίας και της περιόδου αυτής, όπως εγώ (που ήξερα ελάχιστα για την συγκεκριμένη περίοδο στην
The fact that HHhH isn't quite the book I was expecting to read is entirely the fault of the back cover. The last paragraph of the blurb reads:
All the characters in HHhH existed then or still exist now. All the events depicted are true. But alongside the nerve-shredding story of the preparations for the attack runs another story: when you are writing about real people, how do you resist the temptation to make things up?

If you have the Postmodern Klaxon going off in your head, you're not alone -
Mar 09, 2013 Elaine rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
First, I wrestled with a considerable amount of guilt for reading this in English. I could at have read this in French, but it would have been much longer and harder. I know enough about translation to be uncertain of how closely what I read resembled the original. But in the end, it was better to have read this than to have missed this because of my own stupid pride about works in translation. (This sort of personal interjection is actually rather influenced by the style of the book).

Second, th
Sep 14, 2016 Darwin8u rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
“Memory is of no use to the remembered, only to those who remember. We build ourselves with memory and console ourselves with memory.”
― Laurent Binet, HHhH


An interesting narrative about the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich. The title comes from the SS phrase: "Himlers Hirn heisst Heydrich" ("Himmler's brain is called Heydrich"). Instead of telling the story as a straight historical narrative, Laurent Binet weaves himself throughout the main narrative. It becomes in parts a contrived post-mod
Jun 18, 2016 Panagiotis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Το «HHhH» είναι ακρωνύμιο της φράσης: «Himler’s Hirn heist Heydrich» («Ο Χάιντριχ είναι ο εγκέφαλος του Χίμλερ»). Πόσο αντιεμπορικός τίτλος, γλωσσοδέτης. «Κατσίκι», «Γλυκούλης», «Χασάπης», «Ο Δήμιος της Πράγας», «Ο άνθρωπος με την σιδερένια καρδιά», «Το ξανθό κτήνος». Πόσα προσωνύμια για έναν άνθρωπο! Έναν άνθρωπο που υπήρξε ένα από τα μεγαλύτερα τέρατα που γέννησε η ανθρωπότητα. Δημιουργός της SD (Sicherheitsdienst), της τρομερότερης οργάνωσης του ναζισμού. Οργανωτής των Einsatzguppen (Τάγματα ...more
Sam Quixote
HHhH = Himmlers Hirn heist Heydrich, which in English means: Himmler’s brain is called Heydrich.

This is the true story of one of the most evil men who ever lived, Reinhard Heydrich, and Operation Anthropoid (also the original title of the book), the successful plot to assassinate him by the heroic pair, Jan Kubis and Jozek Gabcik.

Heydrich was Head of the Gestapo and one of the most feared men in Hitler’s Third Reich. He was central to the Final Solution (the formal planning behind the Holocaust)
Lubinka Dimitrova
Although certain quirks of the writer's style annoyed me immensely, I can say in all honesty that I rather enjoyed the book (if one can "enjoy" a book with a subject like that). I could do without the personal remarks about the writing process and the author's struggles, and I didn't really appreciate the uber-short chapters, but all in all, in the end, strangely enough, I actually liked the final result, and I'll definitely be on the watch for more of Laurent Binet's work. He managed to give li ...more
Ioannis Anastasiadis
..Η απόπειρα δολοφονίας του 'ξανθού κτήνους' Ράινχαρντ Χάιντριχ, του εμπνευστή της 'Τελικής Λύσης' γ τους Εβραίους, λειτουργεί ως το πλαίσιο πάνω στο οποίο ο Laurent Binet θα ξετυλίξει μια από τις ένδοξες παραστάσεις της Τσέχικης κ Ευρωπαϊκής Αντίστασης ενάντια στην κτηνώδη κυριαρχία του Γ' Ράιχ ..μένοντας πιστός στην απόδοση της πραγματικής Ιστορίας (μέσω αμέτρητων πηγών) κ έχοντας μια αποστροφή γ μια ενδεχομένως λανθάνουσα μυθιστορηματική κατασκευή των δυο βασικών του ηρώων, ο Laurent Binet αν ...more
Aug 19, 2016 Ludmilla rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kitap en korkunç Nazilerden olan Heydrich'e düzenlenen suikast sürecini anlatıyor. Başlı başına heyecanlandırıcı bir unsur bu. Ama bunun yanında HHhH'yi II. Dünya Savaşı gerçeklerini kurgulaştıran tonla romandan farklılaştıran bir şey var: Anlatım tarzı.

Bu kitapta klasik betimlemelerden, karaktere atfedilen duygusallıklardan ya da göze hoş görünse de kulağa yapay gelen diyaloglardan bulamayacaksınız - bulsanız da yazar bir sonraki bölümde kendi kendini eleştirip ele verecek. Söylediklerim size s
Oct 30, 2010 Petr rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Knihu cizince zabývající se naší vlastí čte člověk jaksi jinak: citlivě reaguje na věcné chyby, pozorně sleduje dojmy a hodnocení, je předem maličko naježen. Jen si vezměte, kolik emocí vyvolal Szczygiełův Gottland. Binet se na rozdíl od kriticky uvažujícího Poláka Čechům asi zavděčí, vždyť Praha je podle něj nejkrásnější město světa a Gabčík s Kubišem „strůjci jednoho z největších odbojových činů lidských dějin a nesporně největšího odbojového činu druhé světové války“. Řeč je o atentátu na Hey ...more
Diane S ☔
This was a very differently written type of historical fiction; a stream of consciousness novel where a narrator who happens to be writing a book about the assassination of Heydrich lets the reader in on all his thought processes, feelings, and personal life. In the beginning I found this fascinating as the narrator imparts many little known facts (at least by me) of Heydrich's early life and marriage, the forming of the Nazi party, Hitler, the Night of Long Knives and the forming of his securit ...more
Feb 05, 2016 Natalie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2016
...češki radnici su na krovu praške Opere kako bi s njega uklonili kip Mendelsshona, skladatelja, zato što je Židov. To im je naredio zaljubljenik u klasičnu glazbu, Heydrich novi protektor Češke i Moravske. Ondje se nalazi mnogo skulptura, a Heydrich nije naglasio koja od njih je Mendelsshon. A čini se da ga nitko od njemaca osim Heydricha ne zna prepoznati. Međutim, nitko se ne usuđuje Heydricha zbog tog uznemiravat. Kako traže Židova, njemački esesovac koji nadzire operaciju. odluči pokazati ...more
Feb 02, 2013 Dem rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Jan Book Club Read. 4.5 Stars

HHhH by Laurent Binet is a novel filled with historically correct facts and traces the planning, execution and aftermath of Operation Anthropoid, the resistance’s successful plot to assassinate Heydrich in Prague. The two heroes of the novel are Jozef Gabcik and Jan Kubis, two amazingly brave assassins, but the main character of this novel is the “Butcher of Prague “ Reinhard Heydrich”.
“All the characters in this book are real and all events depicted are true whic
Πραγματικά ακόμη και τώρα αμφιταλαντεύομαι για το αν τα 4 αστεράκια ανταποκρίνονται στην αίσθηση που μου άφησε το συγκεκριμένο βιβλίο!
Και μόνο το γεγονός βέβαια ότι έχει καταφέρει να αποτελέσει το μήλο της έριδος για πολλούς βιβλιόφιλους, το κατατάσσει επάξια -κατά τη γνώμη μου πάντα- σε λίστα to read!
Αν περιμένετε ένα συνηθισμένο ιστορικό μυθιστόρημα, σίγουρα θα σας απογοητεύσει. Αν ωστόσο οι εκπλήξεις είναι για σας καλοδεχούμενες, τότε μην καθυστερείτε την ανάγνωση του!
Μία ιστορία γραμμένη με
Lila Dimaki
Feb 12, 2016 Lila Dimaki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Απίστευτο βιβλίο.Αν και στην αρχή με ξένισε ο τρόπος γραφής του δεν μπορώ να μην το θεωρήσω αριστουργηματικό για δύο λόγους:1)είναι ένα βιβλίο που σου μαθαίνει ιστορία και 2)η συγκίνηση και η ένταση των τελευταίων σελίδων σε καθηλώνουν."Η ιστορία είναι η μόνη μοίρα που υπάρχει:μπορείς να την ξαναδιαβάσεις και να την ερμηνεύσεις όπως θες,μα δεν μπορείς να την ξαναγράψεις".
Miloš Kostić
Kao i obično, znao sam vrlo malo o delu pre nego što sam ga započeo, baš kako najviše volim. Ovog puta zaveo me jedan komentar, ovde na Gudridsu, koji je preneo jedno poglavlje iz ove knjige u kome se ukratko daje zaplet jedne druge knjige. Ovde sam maltene očekivao komičan roman. Ali, iako je tako zovu, ova knjiga teško da je roman. Ovo je stilizovana popularno-istorijska knjiga sa malim dodacima izmišljenih dopunjavanja praznina; knjiga sa zanimljivim pristupom, umereno zanimljiva. Dobra stvar ...more
Οξύτατο, γρήγορο, πικρό, ελπιδοφόρο, το HHhH είναι ένα γνήσιο μετα-μυθιστόρημα. Ο Binet γράφει σημαδεμένος από το αναπόδραστο τσάκισμα της Ιστορίας. Η γλώσσα του, χωρίς καλλωπισμούς και ιδιαίτερη επεξεργασία, καταφέρνει να σε τρυπήσει χάρη στο στο ασήκωτο βάρος της γνώσης που ήδη έχεις για την έκβαση των γεγονότων. Στο τέλος θα έχεις ήδη μοιραστεί με τον συγγραφέα την κενότητα, την ματαίωση, τον σπαραγμό. Μετά θα ψάξεις να μάθεις κι άλλα για τον Γκάμπτσικ, τον Κούμπις, τον Βάλτσικ, τον θρυλικό κ ...more
Jonathan Norton
Apr 01, 2013 Jonathan Norton rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
First of all let's be clear that Nazism is a terrible and pretty stupid political creed, and that the Nazis did evil things. If you're one of those people who think it is silly to use words like "evil", because the world is awfully complicated, then I suggest you explore the more sophisticated viewpoint of Primo Levi's books, where it is shown that the world is awfully complicated AND ALSO it contains evil actions and events.

I have to make that clear as my position, to avoid any misunderstanding
Mar 21, 2014 Abby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Himmlers Hirn heist Heydrich. Himmler's brain is called Heydrich.

Reinhard Heydrich -- the butcher of Prague, the blond beast, the man with the iron heart – was one of the cruelest and most feared of the high-ranking Nazis. Chief of security and an architect of the final solution, he was named Reichprotector of Bohemia and Moravia, the Czech states annexed by Germany, and charged with crushing Czech resistance and all vestiges of Czech culture, “Germanizing” the desirable population and eliminat
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Fobbit
  • Mendelssohn is on the Roof
  • Ivyland
  • Zone
  • Visitation
  • The File: A Personal History
  • Almost Never
  • Pure
  • La Carte et le Territoire
  • Tonio: een requiemroman
  • Brodeck
  • In Times of Fading Light
  • Panorama
  • Reizen zonder John: op zoek naar Amerika
  • Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman
  • Publieke Werken
  • Trieste
  • Boxer, Beetle
Son of an historian, he was born in Paris, graduated from University of Paris in literature, and taught literature in Parisian suburb and eventually at University. He was awarded the 2010 Prix Goncourt du Premier Roman for his first novel, HHhH.

Laurent Binet est né à Paris. Il a effectué son service militaire en Slovaquie et a partagé son temps entre Paris et Prague pendant plusieurs années. Agrég
More about Laurent Binet...

Share This Book

“This scene is not really useful, and on top of that I practically made it up. I don't think I'm going to keep it.” 5 likes
“No, it's not invented! What would be the point of 'inventing' Nazism?” 4 likes
More quotes…