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

The German House

by
3.72  ·  Rating details ·  984 ratings  ·  216 reviews
Set against the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials of 1963, Annette Hess’s international bestseller is a harrowing yet ultimately uplifting coming-of-age story about a young female translator—caught between societal and familial expectations and her unique ability to speak truth to power—as she fights to expose the dark truths of her nation’s past.

If everything your family told yo/>If
...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Expected publication: December 3rd 2019 by HarperVia (first published September 21st 2018)
More Details... Edit Details

Win a Copy of This Book

  • The German House by Annette Hess
    The German House
    by
    Release date: Dec 03, 2019
    Enter for a chance to win one of 10 advance reader's edition of The German House by Annette Hess!

    Format: Print book

    Giveaway ends in: a

    Availability: 10 copies available, 2008 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: Nov 11 - Nov 25, 2019

    Countries available: U.S.

  • Friend Reviews

    To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

    Reader Q&A

    To ask other readers questions about The German House, please sign up.

    Be the first to ask a question about The German House

    This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

    Community Reviews

    Showing 1-30
    Average rating 3.72  · 
    Rating details
     ·  984 ratings  ·  216 reviews


    More filters
     | 
    Sort order
    Start your review of The German House
    Paige
    Eva is navigating life as young adult while trying to balance newfound independence. Accepting a new job translating at a trial, she is torn between her career and her boyfriend, Jurgen, who wants her to be a stay at home wife. Eva then learns that her own family does not agree with her involvement as a translator in the trial either. Translating for the Polish victims of the Holocaust, Eva is met with stories of horror and bravery. But as the trial progresses, she can’t help but feel there are ...more
    Tammy
    Aug 07, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    In Frankfurt in 1963 has been rebuilt and optimism is prevalent throughout German society. When a young woman, with only vague memories of the war, takes on a job as translator for the Auschwitz trials she is appalled to learn that the average German in uninterested in dredging up the past. Those uninterested include her parents and wealthy boyfriend who are against her involvement in the trials. What she learns throughout the process changes her life forever. Without the complicity and support ...more
    Peppy
    Aug 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    The German House is a five star read. It is a powerful and impressive novel, well written and meticulously researched.
    The story takes place in Frankfurt, Germany in 1963 at the onset of the first Frankfurt Auschwitz trial which charged 22 defendants under German law for crimes committed as SS officials in the Auschwitz concentration camp.
    Eva is a young and naive woman whose main goal in life is to get her wealthy beau Jurgen to ask her father for her hand in marriage. She lives with her tightl
    ...more
    Sarah-Hope
    Sep 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: edelweissplus, 2019
    The German House uses the story of a young translator to examine German responses to the Frankfurt Auschwitz trials, which ran from 1963 to 1965. These occurred almost twenty years after the better-known Nuremberg trials held at the end of World War II. Life has moved on for many Germans, and there is powerful public pressure to leave the past buried. The novel was originally published in German in Germany; this is the first U.S. edition.

    The story of Eva, the translator, is contrived
    ...more
    Anne/ Roebbes_reads_and_treats
    Wow! This was a recommendation from my favorite bookseller and it did not disappoint. What I found a bit tricky is that the book is divided into four parts but not into chapters. It was very difficult to put down because the story was very gripping and there were no natural breaks.
    The book treats one of the difficult times in German history: It takes place in Frankfurt a.M. in 1963 and the protagonist (a German interpreter for the Polish language) gets sucked into a lawsuit against a bunch (20?
    ...more
    Katie B
    4.5 stars

    When I first saw this historical fiction book was about the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials of 1963 I knew I had to read it. Even though I have read many historical fiction and nonfiction books about World War 2, I don't often read books that explore the postwar years. The aftermath of the war is something I'm thankful the author deemed worthy of writing about as this was a fascinating read for me.

    It's 1963 and Eva Bruhns is twenty-four years old and living with her family in Fr
    ...more
    Melissa | Recreational Hobbyist
    The German House takes place in 1960s Germany, where many are trying to forget about the war & it's tragedies. The story centers around Eva, a young woman in her 20s, helping out at her her family's restaurant, The German House, & working as a Polish translator. Eva is too young to have known what transpired during the war herself, & everyone she knows refuses to talk about it. As she is living her life of finding herself, as well as finding a husband, she is pulled into translating ...more
    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
    FULL REVIEW WILL BE ON DECEMBER 3.

    It is 1963 in Germany where the Frankfurt trials are ready to get underway.

    We meet Eva who works there as a translator for the Polish witnesses who were testifying against the Germans.

    Ms. Hess has a writing style that will pull you in and have you completely absorbed in the book.  Her research is impeccable.

    THE GERMAN HOUSE is a book that historical fiction fans will devour.

    You do not want to miss reading this boo
    ...more
    Barb
    Sep 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
    “The German House” by Annette Hess is the story of Eva Bruhns who lived in Frankfurt during the war and who, in 1963, has been asked to be a translator during the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials. Her family will not talk about the war, nor acknowledge what truly took place during that time. What was their involvement at that time?

    Now the city of Frankfurt has been reinvented. New buildings have been built the ravages of was and bombings have been erased and Eva’s parents expect her to mar
    ...more
    Ahaaha4
    Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
    The German House is Annette Hess’s first novel and I thoroughly enjoyed the story. It was translated from German and I feel that it must have been a difficult book to translate, but it was done excellently. The story takes place in Frankfort, Germany in 1963 during the Auschwitz trials. The main character Eva Bruhns is a Polish translator for the trials. I loved her character. She was sensitive and independent during a time when women were not very independent. She did not let her fiancé or fami ...more
    Ahaaha4
    Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    The German House is Annette Hess’s first novel and I thoroughly enjoyed the story. It was translated from German and I feel that it must have been a difficult book to translate, but it was done excellently. The story takes place in Frankfort, Germany in 1963 during the Auschwitz trials. The main character Eva Bruhns is a Polish translator for the trials. I loved her character. She was sensitive and independent during a time when women were not very independent. She did not let her fiancé or fami ...more
    Rachel
    Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    The German House by Annette Hess and translated by Elisabeth Lauffer is a complex, fascinating, thought-provoking historical fiction with a bit of mystery mixed in. This book is definitely not an easy read in regards to the heavy subject matter, but it was breathtaking, and I was able to devour it in 2 days.

    This book mainly features Eva Bruhns, a 24 year old German living with her parents and siblings in a house/restaurant literally called The German House in Frankfurt, Germany. It m
    ...more
    Cat
    Oct 29, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
    Any historical fiction based on the German ideology during WWII grabs my attention. I keep thinking that the more I read from the different aspects, the more likely I will be to finally understand what makes a large mass of people do the unthinkable to another large mass, when just weeks earlier the two entities laughed, shared, loved and cried together. So far, the answer still eludes me.
    But this new debut novel by Annette Hess shines a spotlight on the tender subject from a new angle: a full-
    ...more
    MicheleReader
    Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
    3.75 rounded up
    The German House takes place in 1963 in Frankfurt, Germany where wrecked buildings have been rebuilt from WWII and people are trying to move on. But can they really? The Auschwitz Trials are about to begin and Eva Bruhns is hired as a Polish translator. She is an independent woman in a time when most women work as a temporary stop before marriage. Her parents run a local restaurant, The German House. The trials were fascinating and heart-breaking as the horrors of the war bring up fee/>The
    ...more
    Maryann
    Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    What happened to people after the holocaust? Not the Jewish people. The Germans. Some denied . Some hid things. Some never recovered. Cities were rebuilt. Justice took a long time.
    Eva becomes a translator for a Nazi trial. She begins to remember her childhood at Auschwitz living with her parents who worked as cooks for the Nazi commanders.
    She also begins to question her fiance and future role as a wife and woman.
    I liked how she stood up against what she did not agree with in her fam
    ...more
    Linda Hepworth
    Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing

    It is 1963, and in Frankfurt twenty-four-year-old Eva Bruhn is living at home with her parents, her elder sister Annegret, a paediatric nurse and her much younger brother, Stefan. Home is an apartment above The German House, a restaurant owned and run by her parents. Eva has few memories of WWII and her home city, which was left so badly bomb-damaged at the end of the war, is now prospering. Her dreams are focused on wishing for the day when her rich boyfriend, Jürgen Schoormann, will ask her fa
    ...more
    Rachel
    Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    The German House by Annette Hess and translated by Elisabeth Lauffer is a complex, fascinating, thought-provoking historical fiction with a bit of mystery mixed in. This book is definitely not an easy read in regards to the heavy subject matter, but it was breathtaking, and I was able to devour it in 2 days.

    This book mainly features Eva Bruhns, a 24 year old German living with her parents and siblings in a house/restaurant literally called The German House in Frankfurt, Germany. It m
    ...more
    Cat
    Oct 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Any historical fiction based on the German ideology during WWII grabs my attention. I keep thinking that the more I read from the different aspects, the more likely I will be to finally understand what makes a large mass of people do the unthinkable to another large mass, when just weeks earlier the two entities laughed, shared, loved and cried together. So far, the answer still eludes me.
    But this new debut novel by Annette Hess shines a spotlight on the tender subject from a new angle: a full-
    ...more
    Harini Nayak
    Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I loved it!

    Everything was perfect. I could feel everything, from the moment she starts worrying about whether her beau was coming to meet her parents. It is set in 1960s Germany, which I'm assuming was a gloomy place because it is just a little after the world war. And in the midst, her family has been lying to her. It was quite intriguing, the things said during the translations and then it got disgusting when she mentioned the fact that her brother threw a fit over iver eating his pets. I un
    ...more
    Annie
    Nov 03, 2019 rated it liked it
    Annette Hess’ The German House (expertly translated by Elisabeth Lauffer) is a deeply uncomfortable read. It’s supposed to be. As protagonist Eva Bruhns works as a translator at a trial modeled on the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials, she finds that the very human impulse to avoid conflict, to let bygones be bygones, has become a national pathology. But, unlike so many of the people if her life, Eva finds that she can’t let history be swept under the rug anymore…especially when she finds her own direct con ...more
    Rebecca
    Oct 20, 2019 marked it as to-read
    I received an advance copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
    Kim McGee
    Sep 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Well after WWII in Frankfort Germany 1963, Germany struggles to move on from a devastating war but many in the world haven't forgotten nor forgiven the atrocities that happened there. A young woman signs on as a translator to help an investigator with the Auschwitz Trials. She does this against the wishes of her old fashioned fiancee and others but soon finds herself hopelessly drawn into the trial, victims and the defendants. Eva has to confront her own past in order to understand her country's ...more
    Catherine
    Aug 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I found this book very enjoyable. I have read a lot of WW2 history and fiction set in that period. This story is different in that it deals with the first postwar generation of Germans who were infants during the war and have forgotten what really happened. Their parents have reinvented themselves and their family history. As one character puts it most of Eva's generation act like a bunch of aliens in brown shirts descended on Germany for the duration of WW2 and carried out terrible acts which m ...more
    Don
    Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Releases in the US 12/2019, I read an advanced reader copy. Translated from the German printing. Set in the early to mid-1960s Auschwitz Trials in Frankfurt. The main character is a young translator at the trials, coming from a background of denial of what happened in the camp, she comes to realize its horrors and her family involvement. Well written with good character development and interesting subplots. In my mind while reading was the Bible verse “the sins of the fathers visited upon the ch ...more
    Marie
    Nov 16, 2019 rated it it was ok
    Thank you in advance to Bookish First and Harper Via for the ARC to review. A positive review was not required and all words are my own.

    Deciding to broaden my literary tastes, and try new genres, one such fascinating period is World War II. And, having read previous World War II/Nazi/Concentration Camp books, such as “The Tattooist of Auschwitz”, “Cilka’s Journey”, “The Lilac Girls” – “The German House” provided a different perspective. I claimed it with points through BookishFirst and eagerly
    ...more
    Leslie
    Nov 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Many books are written about World War II and I read many of them. Not as much has been written about Germany after the war. Years after, how did individuals react as the truth became known of the horrible atrocities that were committed? How did individuals who participated manage to return to everyday life? The German House by Annette Hess fills this void and answers some of these questions.

    Already an international bestseller, The German House is an emotional journey of a young Germ
    ...more
    Aubrey Warnick
    Nov 03, 2019 rated it liked it
    This book was a lot. It was only 325 pages, but it felt like so much more! I initially thought it would be a quick, read in one sitting read, and then I realized yes, that’s how it should be read. Because if you don’t read this in one sitting, or end at one of the parts, you’ll have no idea what’s going on or where you ended.

    Wins:

    -it’s a side of WW2 that I have never heard talked about, I liked the fact that it was 20 years later and during the trials

    -character progression: just wi
    ...more
    Kerrin Parris
    Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Recommended to Kerrin by: Bookish First
    Vergangenheitsbewältigung is a German term describing the “struggle to overcome the negatives of the past” or “working through the past”. The word has become key in the study of post-1945 German literature, society, and culture. In true German form, vergangenheitsbewältigung has 25 letters. But perhaps its extreme length shows the importance of the processes needed for a society to move forward from it’s criminal, violent past. Vergangenheitsbewältigung is based upon philosopher George Santayana ...more
    Smbergin
    Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    Shelves: favorites, netgalley
    This book gutted me …

    As a historical fiction enthusiast, I have read many books about concentration camps, survivors, and living with the aftermath. The German House is the book I’ve been waiting for because it attempts to address the burning questions in the recesses of my mind: how did the Nazi officers and their families walk the earth among humankind when the war ended?

    Set in 1963/1964 in Germany, the story centers around the young professional Eva, who’s family operated and lived above a
    ...more
    Lia
    Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: books-i-own, arc
    I won a copy of The German House from BookishFirst and I was so excited to receive that I started it almost immediately. Set during the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials in the 1960s in West Germany, the story follows Eva, a German woman in her twenties who works as a translator. She is brought into the trial because of her ability to speak Polish. Through the different characters, we see the ways in which Germans dealt with the aftermath of the Holocaust, from denial to complete ignorance. Eva was a y ...more
    « previous 1 3 next »
    topics  posts  views  last activity   
    Bookish First Rea...: The German House by Annette Hess 2 5 Oct 25, 2019 07:08AM  

    Readers also enjoyed

    • La sospecha de Sofía
    • Largo pétalo de mar
    • El legado de la villa de las telas
    • Papel y tinta
    • El pintor de almas
    • La huella del mal
    • Sakura
    • Dos crímenes
    • Todo lo que sucedió con Miranda Huff
    • La cocinera de Castamar
    • Los relámpagos de agosto
    • La cara norte del corazón
    • La danza de los tulipanes
    • El latido de la tierra
    • La Red Púrpura (Elena Blanco, #2)
    • Die Töchter der Tuchvilla
    • Der Apfelbaum
    • Antes de los años terribles
    See similar books…
    64 followers
    Annette Hess grew up in Hanover and currently lives in Lower Saxony. She initially studied painting and interior design, and later scenic writing. She worked as a freelance journalist and assistant director, before launching a successful career as a screenwriter. Her critically-acclaimed and popular television series Weissensee, Ku'damm 56 and Ku'damm 59 are credited with revitalizing German TV. S ...more