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Stasi Child

(Karin Müller #1)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  2,323 ratings  ·  329 reviews
David Young's chillingly intricate Stasi Child was A London Times “Crime Book of the Month” and a Telegraph Pick of the Week.

1975: When Oberleutnant Karin Muller is called to investigate a teenage girl's body at the foot of the Berlin Wall, she imagines she's seen it all before. But she soon realizes that this is a death like no other before it - the girl was evidently try
ebook, 416 pages
Published October 1st 2015 by Twenty7 Books
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Average rating 3.80  · 
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Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery, netgalley
I am mad with the author because the idea of the novel had so much potential. Moreover, the real historical information was interesting and could have resulted in an amazing historical mystery. Too bad the writing did not live up to the idea.

The blurb immediately drew my attention, a mystery set in 1975 East Berlin with a DDR police woman as main character. I do have a soft spot for books set in Berlin before the wall fell and for the city in general so I was looking forward to dive in the atmo
Jul 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Cheating was a concept both foreign and integral to the fighting of wars.”

----Tom Clancy

David Young, a British author, has penned a riveting German thriller in his debut book, Stasi Child which is the first book in the Karin Müller series. This series welcomes an exciting and brave new female detective chief inspector or in German, an oberleutnant who is a married yet career-minded woman, assigned on the case when a teenage girl's mutilated body is found near The Wall in East Berlin in the
Read my interview with David Young, the author of "Stasi Child":

An original and accomplished debut thriller, “Stasi Child” is a compelling police procedural set in 1970s Cold War Germany.

Unlike any police-procedural I’ve read before, this novel is set in Berlin – before the wall came down. The plot is intricate but well rendered so that even the many unfamiliar names, places and references do not detract from its enjoy-ability.

The book, though fiction, wa
Jul 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is an atmospheric and exciting thriller debut, featuring Oberleutnant Karin Muller and her deputy, Unterleutnant Werner Tilsner. The book is set in East Berlin, 1975, and begins when Muller and Tilsner are called to investigate the mutilated body of a young girl by the Berlin Wall – or, as it is named in East Germany, the ‘Anti-Fascist Protection Barrier.’ Both Muller and Tilsner are wary when they discover a Stasi officer, Klaus Jager, is already there and that they will be assisting him, ...more
4.8 stars – nearly perfect.

I originally saw this listed on Netgalley, and my request was subsequently denied. So I waited (im)patiently for its release, and finally got to it. This brilliant debut novel was well worth the wait!

This suspenseful thriller is set in 1970s East Germany. The Berlin Wall, known as the “Anti-Fascist Protection Barrier” in the East, is standing, and there’s a distinct sense of claustrophobia and near-paranoia for everyone, for everyone is a potential enemy of the state.
Jan 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
A book set in East Germany when the Berlin Wall divided a common people can only be interesting based on location and historical setting. When it has been so extensively researched, crafted with skill and written with a shifting tension it can only be winner.
David Young has produced a novel of great weight and found a niche his plotting and thrilling style exploit to the very end.
A terrible crime which needs investigating but when everyone is a potential informer and the state controls everyth
Cold War Conversations Podcast
Excellent and unusually located police procedural set in the former East Germany.

I can’t think of many English language detective novels set in the former East Germany and David Young has created a fascinating character in the damaged but tenacious Oberleutnant Karin Müller.

In most countries she’d be just a regular cop in charge of the murder team, however this is communist ruled East Germany and she’s a card carrying party member believing in “real and existing socialism”.

Investigating a teen
Dec 31, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
3.5 stars

What David Young gets right here is the never ending paranoia and complications of living within a state so controlled by an overwhelming bureaucracy and a powerful police security force. Every action could be being watched by the Stasi and you have no way of knowing just who they are, how or why they are monitoring you, and what will happen to you if they decide you have become an enemy, or just a problem, of the state. This feeling comes over very effectively in the novel; Oberlutnant
Liz Barnsley

I’m a bit late reviewing Stasi Child, which has actually caused much hilarity but in the end I win. As I knew I would…

The thing with Stasi Child is that it doesnt matter that this is a late review because that book has stayed with me. When I rather randomly decided that today would be the day, I thought I’d have to remind myself of the read somewhat but then discovered that I remembered it pretty much in its entirety – the political landscape, Karin Muller a completely engaging character, the be
Sep 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-crime-2015
I will never forget 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall, that divided East and West Germany. Everybody was glued to the television, as scenes played out of the infamous dividing wall coming down. Prior to 1989, East Germany was under Communist rule and East Germans could not enter the West. It was a society cut off from the rest of Western Europe. David Young, in his remarkable debut novel, brings to life the culture and atmosphere of East Germany in the years before the fall of the wall.

A police procedural set in East Berlin during the 1970's. A teenage girl's body is discovered near the border crossing between East and West Berlin. The assumption is the girl was escaping East Berlin and was shot by security guards. The only problem is the girl's body indicates she was escaping West Berlin and that does not make sense to Karin Muller, investigating officer.

I really enjoyed this book and keep checking for more. Hope this is a series.
Gisela Hafezparast
Apr 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
It annoys me when writers write books and only put a minimal amount of research into the story. This story is about East-Germany in the 1970s, the Stasi etc. Don't get me wrong it is a good story, but if David Young had not just gone to the sterotypes but had researched more this could have been a great story. He has done the typical thing of writing about part of a history of a country and political systems without bothering going into it with depth and writing about it in a totally western sor ...more
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Stasi Child is an impressive first novel by David Young depicting a competent police procedural detailing the murder of a young female teenager.

From the start, lead investigator Karin Muller detects nothing is as it seems and from the appearance of the body, it is clear her paths are clearly being thwarted by all sorts of means.

Muller and her young deputy are given the task of determining how the mutilated body of a young teenager has become discovered in East Germany. Early on, Muller, her de
Lynn Mccarthy
Aug 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Karin Muller is investigating a teenage girls death her body was found at the foot of the Berlin Wall.
All the evidence doesn't add up.
The Stasi are overseeing their work and Karin finds she has many questions that need answers.
The story is set in East Germany in the 1970 and has many twists and sub plots to the story and its hard not to give anything away.Its david's first book Well done.

Thank you to the Author and netgalley for a chance to read this book.
Nov 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2019
A teenage girl's body is found at the foot of the Wall in 1975 East Berlin. According to the Stasi, she was shot while escaping - not as one might commonly expect, to but rather from the West. It doesn't take Oberleutnant Karin Müller of the Volkspolizei long to realize that nothing about that official version of events adds up... but questioning Stasi claims is a dangerous thing, one that could cost her more than just her career.

Gripping, well researched and with a number of unexpected twists -
Oct 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This historical crime novel, apparently the first in a series featuring Oberleutnant Karen Müller, is set in the mid-1970s in East Germany. The mutilated body of a teenaged girl is found near the Berlin Wall. Klaus Jäger, an officer with Stasi, East Germany’s secret police, enlists the help of Karin and her partner, Werner Tilsner. Jäger tells them the girl was shot by someone from the West as she was escaping to East Germany. The police detectives are told to “’discover the identity of the girl ...more
Sep 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Constructed around three contrasting narrative viewpoints, the book takes place in 1970’s East Berlin, with the famed wall firmly in place, and the contrast between life either side of it strongly in evidence throughout. A young girl’s body is discovered close to the wall, with the general consensus being that she has taken the unusual step of fleeing from the West to the East, unlike most of her contemporaries. However, as Oberleutnant Karin Müller ( the only female head of a murder squad in th ...more
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Thriller set in East Berlin (… before it became just ‘Berlin’)

Stasi Child transports the reader back to the 1970s, when Berlin was East and West – divided by The Wall (or the Anti Fascist Protection Barrier as the East Germans authorities preferred to call it…). It is a stark reminder of times really only just gone by… Times when the Stasi – the East German secret police – controlled the population absolutely and were kept up to speed by a network of informants amongst the ordinary (and fearful)
Chris Wolak
Aug 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a Cold War thriller that has nothing to do with nuclear annihilation or international espionage. The focus is on a murder investigation in East Berlin in 1975, and all the players are East Germans.

Readers familiar with Cold War novels set in Communist East Germany will feel at home in the setting and tone that Young creates. Readers new to the genre will quickly feel the bleakness of life in East Germany, from the pollution to inadequate winter clothing to the construction of monolithic
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A solid 9/10.
Feb 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Stasi Child"-riveting from the first page- is a powerful page-turner which will make you think about what it means to be human, what it means to be free!

This book is a crime story about Oberleutnant Karin Müller who is called in to investigated the gruesome, and very mysterious, murder of a teenage girl who is found dead near the Berlin Wall. Without giving any spoilers, this book is actually two parallel stories, one is set in East Germany in the winter of 1975 and the other one, almost a year
Nick Brett
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
Last month I visited the fascinating city that is Berlin. One of the many things I did was visit the Stasi museum. Set in the HQ building in a vast complex you got a real sense of a State that thrived on fear and information. Spies would be spying on everyone, including themselves. Citizens lived in fear for their own lives, dissent was not encouraged and informing on your friends, colleagues or neighbours was encouraged. And meticulous records were kept on everything.
So when I saw Stasi Child,
Sep 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is full of twists and turns from beginning to end. Karin Muller is investigating the death of a teenage girl found dead at the base of the Berlin Wall. As Karin and her deputy investigate this murder they are sent in many mis-directions by the Stasi who are supposed to be overseeing the investigation. When the evidence causes her to have many more questions than answers then things really start to get interesting. Great read. I would like to thank the publisher and Net Galley for the c ...more
This started off promisingly, but got increasingly more preposterous as it went on.
Mar 24, 2016 rated it it was ok
Nicely written but story less than credible. A good holiday read - easy going don't need to think too much. ...more
Aug 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank the publisher and netgalley for allowing me to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
David Young has written a masterful debut thriller here with a compelling insight into the work of the East German law enforcement agencies in the 1970s before the Berlin wall came down. Having been to Berlin at that time I am well aware of the atmosphere of distrust between the East and the West then and Young conveys the constant underlying threat from those in control of the ve
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed reading this book. Even though I am not a fan of criminal I really liked Stasi Child and have moved on to the Stasi Wolf. I dare say I liked it as much as I liked "the girl with the dragon tatoo". It is not a very big novel, the plot is interesting and it moves fast without too many words, there are small chapters which make it very easy to read while you are on the bus or you are waiting for the little one to finish her swimming lesson, it set in Berlin that I love and it is ex ...more
Nov 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this dark, atmospheric novel and will definitely read its sequels. The writing is good, with strong characters and well-developed sense of time and place. The former East Germany makes a perfect setting for a crime thriller and is less familiar to readers than Weimar and Nazi era Germany or Soviet Russia.
David Raz
Stasi Child by David Young
Hebrew review follows סקירה בעברית בהמשך
I read this book about three weeks ago but it keeps stating with me which is unusual for thrillers. The reason for this is not that it is such a masterfully well written thriller, because it isn't. The plot is written well enough, with adequate twists and turns, but there are some minor plot holes. It is simple enough to follow, yet complex enough to remain interesting. The characters are also adequately convincing, again, with so
Carly Thompson
May 05, 2019 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Play Book Tag: Stasi Child by David Young - 4.5 Stars 2 15 May 13, 2016 06:06PM  

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David Young was born near Hull and – after dropping out of a Bristol University science degree - studied Humanities at Bristol Polytechnic specialising in Modern History. Temporary jobs cleaning ferry toilets and driving a butcher's van were followed by a career in journalism with provincial newspapers, a London news agency, and the BBC’s international newsrooms where he led news teams for the Wor ...more

Other books in the series

Karin Müller (6 books)
  • Stasi Wolf (Karin Müller, #2)
  • A Darker State (Karin Müller #3)
  • Stasi 77 (Karin Müller #4)
  • Stasi Winter (Karin Müller, #5)
  • The Stasi Game (Karin Müller #6)

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