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The Man with the Iron Heart

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  781 Ratings  ·  53 Reviews
What if V-E Day didn’t end World War II in Europe? What if, instead, the Allies had to face a potent, even fanatical, postwar Nazi resistance? Such a movement, based in the fabled Alpine Redoubt, was in fact a real threat, ultimately neutralized by Germany’s flagging resources and squabbling officials. But had SS Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich, the notorious Man with ...more
Hardcover, 544 pages
Published July 22nd 2008 by Del Rey
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Aug 12, 2008 Justin rated it did not like it
Sadly, this book was a huge disappointment. I am normally a huge fan of Harry Turtledove, but he seriously drops the ball in this book. Many of his other books cleverly integrate major historical events into the narrative and weave an interesting blend of history and fiction. This book, however, simply takes the current problems and arguments over the Iraq War and replaces insurgents with Nazis and George W. Bush with Harry Truman. The thing that I loved about Turtledove was that many of his nar ...more
Tony duncan
Sep 06, 2008 Tony duncan rated it liked it
Recommends it for: sci fi history fanatics
Recommended to Tony by: eMusic audio
A very interesting idea for a book.
In this alternaitve History, there is one minor eventy that changed which allowed nazis tyo fight on after they "lost" the war. It mixes real historical personages with imoptant fictional characters and builds a very believable story about how it would play out, if the Nazis developed sophisticated terrorist technics while Germany was occupied.
This is much more subtle than the Orson Scott cvard book ( see my review of "Empire"). which was a prety transparant i
Brian Eshleman
The premise is interesting -- what if the Germans engaged in guerrilla warfare rather than surrender? Truman dug-in for the long fight is believable. The degree to which this is a M*A*S*H-style commentary on current events is distracting, as is every character's fixation on booze and sex and use of the same phrases.
Scott Tarver
Jan 21, 2011 Scott Tarver rated it really liked it
A wonderful "what if" story about the Nazi werewolves following the end or World War II in Europe. It's hard for me to put the book down.
Justin Ropella
May 11, 2017 Justin Ropella rated it did not like it
Utter trash. I only finished because I didn't want to leave a book unfinished. The plot is weak and the story is full of fluff. This book probably could have been a good 200 or 300 pages shorter and still resolved the way it did fine.
Sep 25, 2009 Christopher rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 16, 2013 Mark rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Nobody
For over a decade, Harry Turtledove produced a volume in his "Southern Victory" alternate history series every summer like clockwork. In it, he explored the eighty years after a Civil War in which the South had won its independence, with his last volume, In at the Death, concluding with the Confederacy defeated and dissolved after their version of the Second World War. Having apparently tired of the series, Turtledove moved on to a different premise by taking the "Werewolf" resistance movement d ...more
Feb 19, 2017 Christopher rated it really liked it
Single volume Turtledove is MUCH better than 6-volume Turtledove.

Starting with the premise that SS Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich begins stockpiling weapons 2 years before the end of the war such that when Germany finally surrenders, he leads a guerilla insurgency of Nazis that refuse to give up the fight.

The parallels to the Iraq war are obvious but interesting. Roadside attacks, terror attacks on civilians, even attacks on popular landmarks (with airplanes). Also enjoyable is the anti-wa
Sep 06, 2008 Aaron rated it really liked it
In a tale that parallels todays debate about the war in Iraq and our battles againtst al-Qaeda, Turtledove's most recent novel presents an alternate timeline in which World War II did not quite conclude with V-E Day. The Nazi's have continued fighting under the leadership of Reinhard Heydrich, who was the second in command of the SS. In reality he died in 1942, when he was attacked by Czech assassins. Turtledove has him survive and start an underground resistance group as Germany is falling to t ...more
Jun 29, 2009 Bibliophile rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2009
Apparently June was my month for "what-if?" novels about Nazi Germany; after Philip Kerr's Hitler's Peace, I read Harry Turtledove's The Man with the Iron Heart, which posits that Reinhard Heydrich survived the attempt on his life in 1942 and went on to head a bloody Nazi resistance to the Allies after May 8, 1945. Turtledove draws extensively from contemporary events in Iraq to describe a world in which Nazi "Werewolves" blow up courthouses (and assassinate Konrad Adenauer as well as General Pa ...more
Sep 16, 2013 Hale rated it really liked it
What if the Germans had refused to admit defeat, and had resisted the allied occupation? The Germans had outline plans for a post-conquest resistance, but they were never seriously pursued.

Turtledove's alternative history fixes this by giving the Nazi underground army a real leader -- the "Man with the Iron Heart." The title was Hitler's sobriquet for one of the most ruthless and capable of his paladins -- SS Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich.

One of the primary administrative architects of th
Jun 12, 2010 Matimate rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi, 2010
What I learned from this book ... absolutely nothing except one thing making an alternative history is the fancy way how to write about Nazi and toy with the things without being accused as sympathizer. Author toyed with different point of views and sometimes it swung in to the melodrama of cheap kind, wait it is all right after all this book is not highlight of the literature, so it is fitting.
The WW II was over and Nazi third Reich was the history, well not at all in the undergrounds where ev
Dec 06, 2008 Matt rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone curious about Iraq and WWII
Recommended to Matt by: Audible
Turtledove presents and interesting premise: what if the Nazi's started a guerrilla war with the US occupation of Germany? I was drawn to it because I read the book Fiasco, a book by Thomas Ricks about the Iraq war, and I wanted to see how it compared with Turtledove's re-interpretation.

My favorite part was seeing how Turtledove portrayed the two powers affected by the Nazi insurgency -- the US and Russia -- and how they differed in fighting it. It brought to light some of the "weaknesses" of th
Jul 29, 2012 Brett rated it it was ok
The premise is interesting: What if a high ranking Nazi officer anticipated losing the war, and stockpiled weapons and people to fight a guerrilla war against the occupying Allied forces afterward?

Clearly written to make people think about the American occupation in Iraq, this novel had promise. Sadly, the promise goes unfulfilled. Turtledove repeats himself a lot. Characters muse on the same topics over and over, with little variation. Scenes of suicidal terrorist acts play out again and again,
Thomas Vree
May 14, 2012 Thomas Vree rated it it was ok
I’ve heard about his stuff for years, his alternate history, and decided to try a one off story, rather than one that was part of a larger series. And I really didn’t dig it. The premise is based on a fact – at the end of WW2, there was a half hearted attempt by the Nazis to organize a guerrilla resistance to the Allied occupation. It never really came to much. Despite the fact that there were still die-hard holdouts, by and large, the Germans had been well and truly crushed. The story here is t ...more
Jun 05, 2016 Steve rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Another brilliant what if by Mr. Turtledove, it is a valid premise, what would have happened if the Nazi Werewolf insurgent movement had been prepared well in advance and operated by leaders as dedicated and brutally efficient as Reinhard Heydrich and Joachim Peiper. The tactics are familiar to all of us in the modern world, but it is not difficult imagining fanatical Nazi’s adopting similar modes of operation.

The only portion I am not certain about is the reaction on the homefront, though the
Jun 10, 2008 Liviu rated it really liked it
This book has a simple premise:

What if Germany after the surrender in 1945 would have been like Iraq after the surrender in 2003? R. Heydrich is not assassinated in Prague in 1943 and prepares the resistance for 2 years before Germany loses.

The action proper starts in May 1945, just after the surrender, with 2 US soldiers looking at a German civilian that seems to check out the wreckage of a truck to see if there is something that can be salvaged - of course we "know" that actually the German is
Aug 31, 2009 Stefan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
The Man With The Iron Heart is fun to read and raises some interesting and important points about what would have happened if the SS and German Armed Forces had conducted commando and partisan activity after the collapse of the Third Reich. The premise of the book is that the assassination attempt against Reinhard Heydrich in 1942 failed and that Heydrich went on to command the werewolf organization. One of the main questions that Turtledove entertainingly tries to answer in this novel is how th ...more
Jul 07, 2012 Daniel rated it it was ok
Shelves: military
I wanted to like this book more. Really, I did. But unlike a lot of Turledove's books this one felt really heavy handed in the manner in which he overlaid post WW2 Germany.

With the non-death of Reinhard Heydrich the Allies encounters a true opposition in post-defeat Germany. Heydrich has had 3 years to prepare for the downfall and subsequent resistance inside Germany. And to anyone who has followed the news in the past decade, every tool that Al Quada has deployed is in the arsenal of Heydrich'
Dec 27, 2015 David rated it it was ok
I would give the book a solid 2.5 stars. Turtledove needs to get away from WWII! This story looks at what if Germany had started stockpiling resources for a resistance in 1943, what would the occupation have been like. So picture the difficulties of Iraq and Afghanistan, only fighting Nazis. The problem is that he uses everything that happened in Iraq and Afghanistan as plots here. One of the main characters is a mother who loses a son and spearheads a movement to get American soldiers out of Ge ...more
Steven Kent
Jan 07, 2010 Steven Kent rated it liked it
This was the second book I have read by Harry Turtledove, an author I have long admired for his imaginative misuse of history. It takes a lot of research and confidence for a writer to successfully twist history and illustrate what could have been. You need to know the setting, the technology, and the personalities inside and out, and few authors can do that like Mr. Turtledove.

In this case, I was not swept away by the plot itself--a story about the Nazis losing the war and then nearly freeing G
Dec 31, 2011 Doug rated it liked it
I thought the premise for the book was very interesting, and although many of the reviewers don't like the direct corelation with our situation in Iraq/Afghanistan, I still found it fascinating to see how the story played out.

I didn't rate the novel more highly because of the lack of depth in the characters and some of the personal story lines. It felt to me that the author was trying to cover a broad set of people involved, but never really explored any one of them in too much depth. I would ha
Sep 02, 2008 Kathy rated it liked it
Typical Turtledove....he writes the same characters over and over again but you read the new books anyway for the changed context and the fun of agreeing or disagreeing with his take on how history could have changed.

In this case, having spent a considerable amount of time studying post-war Germany, he creates a credible and compelling portrait of what could have been different. Although I personally think he underestimates the amount of German participation in de-Nazification and German disgust
Jansen Wee
While I enjoy Turtledove's historical fiction books, I find this particular title lacking in originality. If this had been published a decade earlier, it would have been prescient. As it is, the tactics the guerillas used seemed to be anachronistically juxtaposed from the 9/11 through the Iraq occupation by US forces period. Also, the author does not appear to be fully conversant when describing the SS regalia/insignia on Heydrich's uniform. Moderately enjoyable read.
Ronald Jones
Harry Turtledove is a specialist in the art of weaving alternate history. In Man with the Iron Heart, Turtledove describes a post WWII Nazi insurgency. The author doesn't limit the story to the fighting. He focuses a great deal on the American home front and how continued hostilities in a supposedly pacified Germany influences domestic politics. A good solid look at what could have been had the Nazis decided to wage an armed resistance against the Allied occupiers.
Sheri Fresonke Harper
Fans of Harry Turtledove and newcomers to his science fiction involving alternate histories of World War II will appreciate the exciting study of what happens to a country that surrenders but the soldiers continue to battle on in the Man with the Iron Heart. The analogy to many peace keeping situations in the world is informative while the contest between civil government and guerilla warfare keeps the pages turning.
Read more
Dec 09, 2011 Ray rated it really liked it
What if, after the collapse of Germany in World War II, the Nazis had staged an effective guerrilla resistance against the occupying Allied powers? By imagining an alternate universe where Reinhard Heydrich (whom Hitler once called "The Man With The Iron Heart") survives an assassination attempt in 1942, Harry Turtledove creates a believable story based in recent events in the War On Terror. A very entertaining story told from multiple points of view.
Sheri Fresonke Harper
Oct 01, 2009 Sheri Fresonke Harper rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
Fans of Harry Turtledove and newcomers to his science fiction involving alternate histories of World War II will appreciate the exciting study of what happens to a country that surrenders but the soldiers continue to battle on in the Man with the Iron Heart. The analogy to many peace keeping situations in the world is informative while the contest between civil government and guerilla warfare keeps the pages turning.
Read more >
David R.
Aug 03, 2009 David R. rated it liked it
The Quintessential Turtledove novel. Take one historical episode (in this case, the American struggle over the War in Iraq) and impose it on a different historical instance (in this case, the aftermath of WWII). It's a crisp and well-wrought story, although really and honestly too many liberties are taken with how things might have turned out.
Mar 24, 2012 Justin rated it liked it
Not as good as the majority of Turtledove's alternate history books, but thought-provoking nonetheless. Enjoying the storyline involving the Indiana family who loses their son in a guerrilla attack. Overall though, just way too many parallels to the situation in Iraq, could just insert words here and there and it would be the same story basically.
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Dr Harry Norman Turtledove is an American novelist, who has produced a sizeable number of works in several genres including alternate history, historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction.

Harry Turtledove attended UCLA, where he received a Ph.D. in Byzantine history in 1977.

Turtledove has been dubbed "The Master of Alternate History". Within this genre he is known both for creating original sce
More about Harry Turtledove...

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