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Straight Into Darkness

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  1,486 ratings  ·  95 reviews
In 1920s Munich, homicide detective Axel Berg is called to the scene of a grisly homicide, the victim being a young and pretty society wife. Soon, a second body is uncovered; the discovery of a third indicates that Berg is dealing with an unimaginably evil killer. In the Germany of the time, the investigation cannot be straightforward. Adolph Hitler's power is growing, and ...more
Hardcover, 405 pages
Published 2005 by Headline
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I actually listened to this book and it was difficult to listen to. I can't believe I never read it before. A murder mystery set in 1920's Germany, the rise of Hitler. Historically accurate so even scarier than just the murders. Some people object to the Freudian psychology used, but that was historically accurate so it fit in well. Axel Berg is a Detective who is Danish and lives in Bavaria. The discussion of various "Germans" was interesting as was the discussions in the changes of Munich afte ...more
Complex serial murder mystery set in political turmoil of 1920's Munich...

First, if you're expecting the typical relatively soft mystery plot of Faye's regulars, Rina Lazarus and Peter Decker, they're not here!! This unusual novel features a troubling string of serial killings set in Munich Germany during the historical period in between the world wars (1920's). In addition to the unrest created by the murders, the political scene is one of total upheaval as Hitler's rise to power is well underw
Although the plot strains credulity, weighted as it is with Freudian baggage, the atmospherics and the characters are compelling. The events take place in Munich, 1929, and the city is in turmoil. Germany was recovering from the depression, goods were more readily available, the rich were - filthy, and Munich was a gem of a city. 1929 marked the end of Hitler's so-called "Wilderness Years;" the Nazi party had been rebuilt, membership had grown, and the elite, middle-class, and civil servants (in ...more
Mary Sperry
It's tough to like a book when you dislike every single character in it. Just unpleasant people. I vastly prefer her series mysteries.
All said and done, I didn't really like it. It is very violent and crude, ugly and sad. One could reasonably argue that the time and place were all those things as it is set in Munich, Germany in the 1920's as Hitler and the Nazi party were gaining power.
Lewis Weinstein
Faye Kellerman writes a great series of detective stories. This is one of two historical novels she has written, and it is an outstanding portrayal of crime in 1929 Munich, set against the backdrop of Hitler's thugs just a few years away from power.
Jan 01, 2009 Vivienne rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Susan Isaacs and Ken Follet readers
Story of an average citizen in 1929 Munich, with a 2005 prologue and epilogue written from the viewpoint of the citizen's son. I have a love/hate relationship with books set during this time. So much tension and tragedy with opportunity for the good and bad elements of the individual to shine through makes for great reads but I'm usually left with a "how can people be so vile" hang over that lasts for days.

Straight into Darkness reads like a mystery, not a WWI/WWII novel. I did not suffer from t
This book turned out to be different from FK's usual Decker&Lazarus series (which I'm kind of addicted to). Very different.

She has definitely done her research for this book. But I don't think she likes Germans at all: each and every person described in this book seems to be with poor morales and with really big flaws. All German men (and Axel Berg, the protagonist police officer, who turns out to be Danish) frequent prostitutes (with a loveless marriage, and a nagging wife, who can blame th
In 1920s Munich, Faye Kellerman’s backdrop for this murder mystery is a war-torn city steeped in political unrest. As a barbaric butcher stalks the city, hate-mongers abound, ready to point fingers at any suspect in order to solve the crime and settle the unrest.

But Axel Berg is persistent in attempting to solve the crimes, and not just to close his case; he relentlessly pursues this goal, despite the obstacles he encounters along the way. Beautiful women are murdered and dumped in close proximi
3.5 stars

It is the 1920s in Germany. Hitler is becoming more popular, and Jews and other minorities are becoming targets of violence. Axel Berg is a detective with the Munich police force, but police are not always respected, either. Women are being murdered and Axel is trying to find out who did it, despite, at least in the case of the first murder, his boss wanting him to just pin it on the woman's husband (who is Jewish). Even if they are wrong, it doesn't matter because it looks like they ar
Kellerman geht hier einen ganz neuen Weg. Die hier erzählte Geschichte findet nicht in Los Angeles statt, sondern in München, Anfang der dreißiger Jahre. Nur ganz nebenbei hat dieser Kriminalfall dann doch noch mit Rina Lazarus zu tun, da es um die Ermordung ihres Großmutters geht.
Im nächsten Buch wird darauf Bezug genommen. Es ist aber nicht so, dass man dazu unbedingt dieses Buch gelesen haben muss.

Die Erzählweise ist ganz anders, wie in ihren anderen Bücher. Laufen die Romane über das Duo Laz
Benjamin Solah
Straight into darkness, is a mysterious crime thriller set in 1920s Munich, where Hitler is slowly growing to power. Inspektor Axel Berg must deal a disturbing case in the midst of this hot political climate. With an engaging premise, Faye Kellerman is able to hook you into a mystery with an ending not seen until the final pages.

I really liked this book. Kellerman sets the scene very well and it drew me in as the story went on. There was no way I could work out who the killer was, but it all mad
Pam Boehmer
A crime thriller set in the middle of the political turmoil of the early 1920s in Germany. Hitler was just becoming a German household name, the Jewish population were just starting to be persecuted, and a serial killer was out there murdering influential women. If you like a good who-done-it or historical fiction about the life and times of Germany in the 20s .... You will enjoy this book. The best of both world for me!!!
This is an unusual murder mystery, set in Germany in Hitler's time. Well written. It got a little tiresome for me at times, with all the details about the various political parties. Made me wish, as I often do with historical novels, that I knew exactly which was fiction and which was real. But, overall, a good mystery.
Bonnie Thurber
Historical novel or mystery novel?

My score is 2.5. As a historical novel, this is a 4. Wow! I learned so much about Munich during Hitler's rise to power. As a Faye Kellerman mystery, it's a 1 for me. Too many victims; too many villains. By the time the true villian's identity was revealed, I didn't even know which character it was. A miss for me from a usually trusted author.
Garden Girl
This book is set in either Berlin or Munich right at the time of Crystal Night. We follow a few people and get there reaction to Hitler's speech, the nazis and the general turmoil and distress occuring at this time. Very well written and informative as to the events . Highly recommend this book
I really enjoyed this book which is not a typical Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus story. I love Faye Kellerman's regular detective mysteries but this one was different in that it (primarily) takes place in Germany in the years leading up to the election of Hitler as chancellor. A series of murders of beautiful women takes place in Munich but homicide detectives are continuously hindered in their investigation by ongoing politic rallies, riots, corruption and suspicions within the police ranks, and the ...more
I was skeptical to begin with as I was used to Faye Kellerman s a psychological thriller/whodunit type of author. I knew she is of Jewish faith and descent and was a child of the Holocaust. I am of Jewish descent myself but my direct family experience does not include the Hitler experience. At any rate, I was skeptical of the subject matter due to my own family experience and the massive amount of anecdotal literature out there on the subject.
That being said, I was enthralled by the setting in
Cara St.Germain
I just finished reading this this morning. Wow. I've read everything else Faye Kellerman and wasn't sure I was in the mood for something dark and heavy. But I wanted to know what happened to Rina's grandmother in Munich, and since she decided not to fully find out the answer... I had to go ahead and read! I'm do glad I did! What an amazing story of the times, the hatred political climate in pre-WWII Germany.. And insight into how people were feeling about Hitler before he was elected and caused ...more
Cenie Evans
Departure from her urban scenes into the 1920's. I waited a long time to read this one and it turned out to be one of my favorites.
This book features a troubling string of serial killings set in Munich Germany during 1929. In addition to the unrest caused by the murders, the political scene is adding much turbulence as Hitler's rise to power is well underway. Adding to this disturbing scene is the fact that political influence and corruption run amok at high levels of the police force and government. Despite all this, homicide inspector Axel Berg, uses all his mental abilities and persistence to close in on the killer. In t ...more
My second time. Fabulous book for anyone who wants to understand Germany BEFORE the Halocaust.
I ended up not reading this. When I looked over the blurb, I realized it is a new series (?), or anyway new characters, set in 1920s Munich and incorporating Hitler's rise to national leadership. Not interested. At all. It's a time period that gives me nightmares with the realities; I don't want to read about fictional serial killers.

Having said that, I'm sure it's well-written. That's one of the reasons I like Kellerman: she rarely over-writes, she keeps the suspense level appropriate without g
Bluma Schneider
Great Book. Gave a very real view of Munich Germany thru the eyes of a nonJew.
This is one of my favorite all time books! I want to read it again soon. It had me hooked from the beginning. It is set in WWII time Germany, about a police officer. I love the lead guy even though he is kind of a pig in the way of his marriage. It has a lot of things about the war, but the main theme is about a serial killer, whom the detective is trying to find. This is definately in my top five. I usually have a hard time reading Faye Kellerman books, but this is in a whole new league. She re ...more
I would give it 3-1/2 stars if I could. Some parts were good.
John Hanscom
Excellent historical novel and mystery, with a "Boy, I did not see that coming!", ending.
Bridget Cabibi-Wilkin
Feb 03, 2011 Bridget Cabibi-Wilkin rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Bridget by: found on the shelf
Very good combo of a detective murder mystery and a tale of pre-Holocaust Germany. It's a different look into Germany and Germans than many of those that we've already heard before. The solution was a mystery until the very end - she's a great mystery writer for this reason, although some of the writing did seem a little stiff. I didn't find it "amazing" because there were no strong female characters like Rina in her earliest Lazarus/Decker novels. Well - the women WERE strong, just not main foc ...more
Well...this was an interesting book. The author is Jewish and uses her personal family history for part of the book. The story takes place in Munich as Hitler is rising to power and the Jewish persecution begins. Given the subject matter and time in history this book is very gloomy and sad. Definitely not a book to read at night before going to sleep. The author did an excellent job of transporting the reader to the time and story. The characters are well developed and the ending is intricate an ...more
Donna Mcnab
I found this book disturbing to read. A serial killer is at work in Munich against the background of Germany between the two world wars. Homicide detective Axel Berg, tries to investiage the murders at a time when there is much hatred against the Jewish population and Hitler is becoming popular. The book is, of course, well written and obviously well researched. It lands the reader in the middle of this troublsome time in Germany, which was definitely a difficult place to live and even to read a ...more
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How the germans let it happen 2 7 Jul 15, 2014 12:50PM  
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Faye Kellerman was born in St. Louis, Missouri and grew up in Sherman Oaks, California. She earned a BA in mathematics and a doctorate in dentistry at UCLA., and conducted research in oral biology. Kellerman's groundbreaking first novel, THE RITUAL BATH, was published in 1986 to wide critical and commercial acclaim. The winner of the Macavity Award for the Best First Novel from the Mystery Readers ...more
More about Faye Kellerman...
The Ritual Bath (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #1) Milk and Honey (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #3) Hangman (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #19) Sanctuary (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #7) Sacred and Profane (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #2)

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