This biography of Magda Goebbels follows her from the age of about five to her death in the last days of the European Theatre of WWII, although the buThis biography of Magda Goebbels follows her from the age of about five to her death in the last days of the European Theatre of WWII, although the bulk of the book focuses on her life until the beginning of the War. It traces Frau Goebbels' life through her relationships with men - her stepfather, father, first boyfriend, first husband, and then Goebbels, her second husband - and to a lesser extent her eldest stepson, eldest son, and her probable lover.
This was a fascinating book. I'd previously had no idea about Magda Goebbels' Jewish connections - in fact, when I picked up the book I thought it sounded utterly ludicrous.
I don't agree with all Klabunde's conclusions about Frau Goebbels, and the framing of pretty much her whole life through men irked me. The other thing I found frustrating was the rapidity with which the narrative passed through the war years. I'm sure there was more that could have been said, even given the lack of sources due to the deaths of most of the main players. I also would have loved some information about her eldest son Harald's life post-war, and further proof that women like Emmy Goering (of whom I'd never heard) lived "unmolested" in West Germany post war despite her equally direct association with the Reich. In fact, my main point of difference with Klabunde is that she seems so certain that no harm would have come to the children of Magda and Joseph Goebbels had they not been killed by their parents in the bunker at the end of the war. I'm not nearly so confident.
In the epilogue to The Houseguests, author Mark Lijek expresses the hope that the movie Argo, whatever its inaccuracies, will encourage viewers to finIn the epilogue to The Houseguests, author Mark Lijek expresses the hope that the movie Argo, whatever its inaccuracies, will encourage viewers to find out more about what really happened. It worked. It was for that exact reason that, on arriving home from seeing Argo, I went searching for other information, and Lijek's book was one of the only books immediately available to me. Mark Bowden's book on the wider hostage crisis was at another library branch; Robert Wright's book on Ken Taylor is seriously rare in Australia; now Mendez's book is more widely available, but we saw the movie rather early. "The Houseguests" was available on Kobo, and able to be bought in Australia (thank you for self publishing, Mark Lijek).
Honestly - it showed that the book was self-published. Editing issues, typos, etc. But when you're interested enough, you can totally get past all that, and that's what this book did. Editing aside, I was captivated: and now that I've got my copy of the Argo DVD, I'm inclined to read the book all over again. Something about the way Lijek writes is very refreshing. It's so easy, with the Hostage Crisis, to descend onto jingoism and exceptionalism. Mendez does this a little, but then, he's CIA, you kind of expect it. Lijek just writes.
Obviously one is going to get a positive picture of a man's wife in a book he writes. What he wrote about Cora made me like her even more, and I'd been inclined to like her from the movie because she was played by the awesome Clea Duvall.
Now I've read the Bowden book, and Tony Mendez' own book. I'm still trying to track down the Wright book about Taylor. The Lijek gave me a wonderful view of what actually happened in the story told by Argo, and even more than that, it pointed me in the right direction to find out even more. The movie did exactly what Mark wanted it to do, and Mark's book just further whet my appetite. Thank you....more
I will be giving this book to my mother and asking her to read it. I will be offering it to my PoD mentor if he's interested. I'll be recommending thiI will be giving this book to my mother and asking her to read it. I will be offering it to my PoD mentor if he's interested. I'll be recommending this one generally.
I think it's the zeal of a convert: because when it first arrived I wasn't entirely certain about it. I felt like I was beyond it. I felt like because my church is mostly-sorta accepting, I wasn't the sort of person that Chellew-Hodge was talking about. But the truth is, I am. And I needed to read this book, and I will need the methods of maintaining mental and spiritual strength. This book, for me, is on the level of Stephanie Dowrick in terms of its importance to me, only this is written for people so much like me. This is written for those of us who "don't exist" - queer Christians. People who have to keep standing up and saying "Here I am" because so many people think we don't or shouldn't exist.
Like Susan Howatch's books, it's going on an annual rotation: I *know* I am going to need to re-read this regularly. This book has been key in my discernment and I think it will be key in my ongoing wellbeing. And God bless Candace Chellew-Hodge for writing it....more