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

Payback

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  98 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
During the course of an hour in July 1944, bombers fly over an unnamed German city, while down below, civilians live out their last days. First published in 1956, and now available in English for the first time, Payback paints a savage and unflinching picture of the realities of warfare for ordinary men and women.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published May 1st 2003 by Granta UK (first published 1956)
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 Payback, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Payback

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Chuck LoPresti
Jun 10, 2013 Chuck LoPresti rated it it was amazing
This is nothing less than absolutely gut-wrenching. Rapid fire paced staccato salvos of human destruction spray out a tale of war. Payback is on par with Shalomov and the Aeneid for the most horrid descriptions of the death of men in war. This is the literary equal to 80's nuke-phobia fueled thrash metal of German bands like Sodom and Overkill. And like those bands the blistering exterior often deters the easily deter-able before they realize the level of talent involved in keeping an audience ...more
Bill
Mar 18, 2009 Bill rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, lit-fiction
Like The Stalin Organ, another intense and uncompromising novel about World War II from this German author. This one is about an Allied bombing raid in 1944. Like his other book, not for the squeamish.
Aleksandr Voinov
The literary equivalent of a brassknuckled punch in the gut. Some books are inarticulate screams. The ones that are articulate, though, are even worse.
Mieczyslaw Kasprzyk
Brilliant description of life in Germany under the bombings.
Kimberly
This book takes you to a number of different places in a German city during an air raid. When I read the introduction the reviewer mentioned his short sentences. What I initially passed over as just literary buzz words became meaningful as I read this book. The choppy sentences leave no room for anything but the events. It is certainly uncompromising. There were parts that were just brutal to read, and they made up the bulk of the book. But it is precisely this lack of filler and the ability of ...more
David
Mar 23, 2011 David rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2011
Gripping, harrowing book. I did not expect to read it in one sitting, but how can you stop?

Manages the grim feat of conjuring the horror of war without the disgusting veneer of excitement that too often disfigures war narratives.
Verborgeneschoenheit borderlineingenious
Für mich eines der einprägsamsten und schrecklichsten Bücher der Kriegsliteratur. Mir wurde körperlich teilweise richtig schlecht. Traurig, dass Ledig so in Vergessenheit geraten ist.
Will
Nov 29, 2016 Will rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Der Wind trieb Sergeant Strenehen gegen die Flaksperre. Sechsunddreißig Geschütze jagten pro Minute die doppelte Zahl Granaten in den Himmel. Sie stiegen herauf wie Raketen. Hilflos trieb er in sie hinein.

Er dachte: Wenn es Menschen sind, werden sie jetz aufhören.

Als Antwort zuckten auf der Erde sechsunddreißig Blitze. Feuerspritzer. Durch die Luft kamen sie ihm entgegen wie Schrapnells. Er trieb fünfhundert Meter vor der Flaksperre. Die ersten Splitter schwirrten ihm entgegen. Manche pfiffen.

E
...more
AC
Jul 14, 2012 AC rated it liked it
This is not as good as the Stalin Front. Read that one... an excellent book. That one will suffice wrt Ledig
Wim Van
Jan 07, 2013 Wim Van rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oorlog van zijn gruwelijkste kant. Algehele, niets ontziende destructie. Een boek als een loeiharde stomp in de maag.
Steve
Steve rated it it was amazing
Feb 16, 2013
Fiona
Fiona rated it it was amazing
Jun 26, 2007
Paul Greenpage
Paul Greenpage rated it really liked it
Jul 16, 2015
Mira Yunus
Mira Yunus rated it liked it
Sep 07, 2011
Homersevil
Homersevil rated it really liked it
Jan 09, 2016
Nicolas Steenlant
Nicolas Steenlant rated it it was amazing
Mar 17, 2013
Thorsten
Thorsten rated it it was amazing
May 05, 2013
Ann
Ann rated it really liked it
May 15, 2016
William
William rated it really liked it
May 27, 2014
Beth
Beth rated it liked it
Apr 29, 2014
Sheila Shapleigh
Sheila Shapleigh rated it it was amazing
Jan 06, 2014
Subiabre Repetto
Subiabre Repetto rated it really liked it
Feb 20, 2016
David Campbell
David Campbell rated it liked it
Oct 23, 2016
Melanie
Melanie rated it really liked it
May 27, 2016
Roderick
Roderick rated it really liked it
Sep 04, 2015
Gönül
Gönül rated it liked it
Mar 02, 2016
Jaerven
Jaerven rated it liked it
Jul 13, 2015
Anna
Anna rated it really liked it
Sep 09, 2016
Gust
Gust rated it really liked it
Apr 26, 2016
Dan
Dan rated it really liked it
Oct 04, 2011
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
369217
Gert Ledig was born in Leipzig and grew up in Vienna. At the age of 18 he volunteered for the army, and was wounded at the battle of Leningrad in 1942. He later reworked his experiences in the book, 'The Stalin Organ'. Switching between the German and Russian lines, Ledig brings us the experience of war from both sides of the conflict. Gert Ledig describes in horrifying detail the graphic and ...more
More about Gert Ledig...

Share This Book



No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »