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The Taster

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  9,518 ratings  ·  1,328 reviews
Amid the turbulence of World War II, a young German woman finds a precarious haven closer to the source of danger than she ever imagined--one that will propel her through the extremes of privilege and terror under Hitler's dictatorship . . .

In early 1943, Magda Ritter's parents send her to relatives in Bavaria, hoping to keep her safe from the Allied bombs strafing Ber
Paperback, 323 pages
Published January 30th 2018 by Kensington Publishing Corporation
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SFrick I have been confused as well thinking that the author had written a new book. But I surmise not. I concur with you Roxanne the title of the Taster, wa…moreI have been confused as well thinking that the author had written a new book. But I surmise not. I concur with you Roxanne the title of the Taster, was more than satisfactory.(less)

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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  9,518 ratings  ·  1,328 reviews

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Elyse  Walters
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
fascinating piece of the puzzle into just how insane Hilter was through the eyes of ‘food tasters’.
Madga Ritter, age 15, was naive about her country and politics. - and desperate for a job.
She was ‘lucky’ to land an honored job tasting the Fuhrer’s food putting her own life at risk in case the food was * poison*.

Naivety was replaced with rage when Madga learns the truth about the monster she was working for.

Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the tooth fairy, Hitler was
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
5 stars! This was a captivating, suspenseful, addictive and fascinating read!

This story revolves around Magda Ritter, a young woman employed by Hitler during WWII. Magda blindly applied for work with the Third Reich, not knowing what the job would be – she was simply looking for employment. She was hired as one of Hitler’s “tasters” – a group of young German women who lived on Hitler’s properties whose job it was to taste his food prior to him eating meals to ensure it wasn’t poisoned. What a j
Holly  B


It's 1943- Magda Ritter, young ,naive and German. She is a food taster for the Fuhrer.

Her position would place her in the Teahouse at Hitler's Berghof, The Wolf's Lair and The Furer's Bunker in Berlin.
-Is this a job she seeked? NO
-Did she want to be separated from her parents/family? NO
-Was she a supporter of Hitler or the SS Party? NO
-Did she fear for her life and the lives of her family and loved ones? YES

Magda lives with her parents in Berlin and Allied bombs have been falling along with r
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
(Please excuse the really bad pun! I can’t believe I’m using it! 😬 )

4 delicious stars to The Taster! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

The Taster was highly recommended by my friend, Holly. Who knew there were food tasters for Hitler during WWII? This dangerous job was viewed as their service to The Reich. Magda’s story was loosely based on a real taster who only told her story late in life when she was in her 90s. Magda is not a member of “The Party,” and her sentiments do not lie with Hitler. So, as you can imagine
Brenda ~Traveling Sister is frustrated with GR
I was lost in a coulee reading The Taster with Lindsay and this one really surprised us and not what we were expecting. The Taster gave us a different perspective on WWII than we are used to reading and we learned some things we were not aware of. The story really had us thinking, wanting to know more and we really enjoyed our discussion.

V.S Alexander takes us to the places Hitler lived, giving us some insight into his life and relationships and as to why Germans followed him. The story is tol
Mar 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
Classic case of "good concept, bad execution". The Taster is a World War II story told from the point of view of one of Hitler's food tasters, meant to protect him from poisoning attempts. Great concept, but that's about all this book has going for it. (WARNING: I'm going to spoil the ending a the end of this review, so be forewarned.)

The novel starts with the sentence "Who killed Adolf Hitler?" and I'm immediately disappointed. That's the story? It's a mystery about who killed Hitler? I feel li
Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
4 stars

It is ironic that I never considered that there would have been women whose job it was to taste the food that was prepared for Hitler. Also, it was ironic that all of these tasters were women, not a man among them. Yet, these women were selected to offer up their lives for a man that many idolized.

Magda Ritter, a young German girl was chosen for the position of taster. She is brought into the very core of Hitler's various residences, Berghof, Wolf's Lair, The Fuehrer's bunker all to have
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I was not sure whether I would enjoy a book that was about Hitler’s reign. I am so pleased I read this book it’s a wonderful story full of emotion with a heart tugging love story, mixed with the hardship of war and its many casualties. This is so much more than a book about Hitler and does not glorify his atrocities!!

I was so gripped by this from the very beginning you had me in the palm of you’re hand until the very last page. I practically read this in one sitting and went to sleep thinking a
May 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was fabulous !!! And, I felt like it was a bit ironic that I finished it yesterday, on the 73rd anniversary of Adolf Hitler’s death. The plot which centered around Magda Ritter’s life working for the Reich and having the job of being one of Hitler’s tasters, due to his mounting fear of being poisoned, was heartbreaking as well as an emotional story filled with acts of extraordinary courage.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Stars !!
3.5 stars rounded up. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Carol Monda and enjoyed her voice tremendously. She sounds very unique with almost a rasp and a lower register voice tone which was pleasing to my ear. Her voice translated quite well to my idea of the German accent, although I am no audiophile, and have no proficiency in German.

The story begins in 1943 in Berlin with Magda Ritter. Her parents are concerned about the encroaching war and send her to her Uncle Willy and Aunt Reina in B
There are many good novels on the subject of WWII. What makes this book stand out? It is something never told before.

The idea of this book was prompted by an account of Margot Woelk, a real taster for Adolf Hitler, who revealed her story at the age of ninety-five. This book is not based on her life, although several scenes from her life were incorporated into this story.

“Who killed Adolf Hitler? (…) The circumstances surrounding his death have been disputed since 1945…”

In this story, a fictiona
I had mixed feelings about this book. It was really engaging, and I liked Magda a lot. It's always truly fascinating to see WWII from the perspective of an average German citizen, and this was no exception. However, despite how average Magda is, everything happens to her. Warning, a lot of spoiler in this spoiler - like the entire plot. (view spoiler) ...more
Deanne Patterson
An absolutely amazing novel loosely based on an interview a 95 year old woman gave several years ago that was a taster for Hitler. It was fascinating to read about the many books the author has read on the Third Reich and all the research he has done on this. German woman Magda Ritter is at the end of her life and feels she must release her lifelong secrets from their inner prison. She feels she has been punished enough by them so it goes to the beginning of her life and tells her story. . Young ...more
Dawn Michelle

I requested this book because it sounded interesting. I had no idea just how in-depth it would be and just how much this book would affect me. I cannot even imagine what life must have been like during the war, especially for the Germans who didn't subscribe to Hitler's madness; I can imagine even less what it must have been like to be plucked out of nothing and made a "taster" of Hitler's food to make sure it wasn't poisoned.

Magda is just a normal German girl; she has no great ambitions a
Jun 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019
3.5 German WWII historical fiction stars

I really wanted to love this one as I see so many other Goodreads Friends gave it 4 and 5 stars. Maybe it just wasn't the right timing for me.

This tale is the story of Magda Ritter, a young German woman who becomes a food taster for Hitler. With a fear of being poisoned, Hitler employed dozens of women who tasted his food prior to it being delivered to him.

This was an insider's view of life during WWII in close proximity to Hitler. Magda has several encoun
Aug 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018
The best part about this book was the idea - one of Hitler's tasters tells her story - and the worst part about this book was the execution.

I stayed interested in the novel because the premise was so intriguing to think about and, although I have read many books about the Holocaust told from the perspective of Jewish survivors, I don't know much about the last days of the Reich in Germany, and the promise of a birds-eye-view from Hitler's claustrophobic bunkers was enough to keep me around.

Oct 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
The Taster tells the story of Magda, a young woman who tasted Hitler’s food to make sure he didn’t get poisoned. It’s an interesting premise, but sadly the book doesn’t live up to it. I think the main issue is the writing. It’s very distant, with lots of telling instead of showing. I never felt connected to the characters or the events described in the book. The story covers several years and is told in a linear fashion, without any suspense or surprises. It all makes the book a little uninspiri ...more
Feb 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A big thank you to Kensington publishing, V. S. Alexander and Netgalley for the opportunity to read an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review. Thank you as well to my Goodreads friends for introducing me to this book. The moment I started reading, I was captivated and intrigued. It's not too often that a book captures my attention from start to finish but The Taster was successful in achieving this feat.

I found the writing style to be quite interesting. It was simple and straightforward
Jul 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I borrowed this book from a fellow teacher at my school and I was so glad that I did. The author, V.S. Alexander, based the premise of this book, on an article she came across about a woman named Margot Woelk who was a taster for Hitler. The article came out in 2013 when Woelk was approaching her 95th birthday. Woelk had never disclosed what she did during WWII before then. V.S. Alexander used some of Woelk's experiences, reported in the article, as the catalyst to write this novel.

I have read
Mar 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wwii
This is a different look at World War II than readers are used to reading. The Taster is from the perspective of a young German girl and is about life inside Germany during the war. It's a coming of age story for a young girl with little to no interest in politics and war to a young woman who begins to see the moral dilemmas of the war and the inhumanity of the Nazi party.

Magda's parents send her out of Berlin because the allies have started bombing and they fear for her safety. She goes to live
Stephanie Anze
Aug 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
".... I wondered how dire my circumstances might become as a worker for the Reich."

Magda Ritter lives a carefree life until the war. All takes a drastic turn when Berlin begins to get bombed by the allies. In order to protect her, her parents send Magda to live with relatives in Bavaria. Because its expected that she contribute to the Reich as a German woman, Magda interviews with them and gets a job. Unbeknownst to her, she is assigned to the kitchen in Berghof, Hitler's mountain retreat, as on
Feb 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There are many good novels written about WWII, however, I think what drew me to this work was the fact that it was written from the point of view of an ordinary German woman. Many ordinary Germans played an important role in WWII and the character, Magda Ritter, is one such woman. She was a young German woman who out of necessity and family demands needed work to help support the household. Magda interviews and is chosen to work for Hitler as a "Taster" of his food. This sounds promising, after ...more
Jan 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle, net-galley
This is an exceptionally well done work of historical fiction. I love WWII historical fiction but I want it done well, like Stones from the River or The Book Thief. I want WWII historical fiction that is going to have me completely immersed in time and place and I really love it when the story is told from an unexpected POV. This book did both of those things so very, very well. I found the descriptions of the bombings and destruction to be some of the best I have read and found them to pack a p ...more
Mar 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Historical Fiction at its best!

Mar 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Not a terrible book, but also not one that I really loved. I didn’t feel anything for the romance that seemed to just happen one day. There was no real development I feel. It was just like ‘one day we made love’ and so on. Was just emotionless for me. Towards the ending though, I begin to feel the heartache and sorrow the world experienced back then. Overall, the story was okay, but a bit unbelievable. The writing was okay. I wouldn’t rule out reading other books from the author, but this won’t ...more
Tiffany Marin
Jan 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Magda Ritter, a young German girl, finds herself in a precarious position, one that, ironically, gives her her best chance at relative safety during the horrors of World War II. This new position ensures that she’ll be fed and taken care of, exposing her to circumstances that are luxurious compared to wha
Traci Hall
Oct 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I remember being fascinated with the Holocaust when I was a teenager and I couldn't get enough of what life might have been like. Anne Frank was a favorite. The Taster shows another view entirely as Magda--impoverished but with her family, comes of age as a young woman during the war. German born, she is forced to do her "duty" and work for Hitler as his food taster. She struggles with her own views politically, and morally, and yet finds the courage to act. V.S. Alexander has crafted an epic no ...more
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Given to me kindly by @netgalley. Enjoyed reading this historical novel.
The terror and pain suffered by ordinary people during the Hitler's government is something unimaginable. Thank you. I APPRECIATE IT.
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I love World War II books, anything I can learn I will, even if fictionalized to make it more interesting. The bones are there, and that is what I like. Of course, no one knows exactly what was said, but the setting is true and fills my history loving heart.

This is the story of Magda Ritter, a German girl, but not a party member because she wasn’t sure she believed the ways of the Reich. When Berlin was being bombed her father and mother sent her to Berchtesgaden to live with her aunt and uncle
Alyssa Maxwell
Sep 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Magda Ritter is a young German woman intent on getting through the war and living her life. Politics don't particularly interest her, and she has no use for Third Reich idiologies. When, by necessity, she goes to the party looking for a job, she's thinking it will be something inocuous, maybe clerical. What happens next changes her life and her outlook on her country forever, challenges her faith in human nature, and at times makes her question her own humanity. I felt as though I were living ea ...more
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Also see Michael Meeske

I'm happy to share my historical women's fiction with you thanks to Kensington Publishing. My novels feature strong women protagonists whose lives take them on incredible journeys in settings fraught with danger and intrigue. Along the way, they learn about life, love, and themselves.

My writings include: The Magdalen Girls (2017), The Taster (2018), The Irishman's Daughter (

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